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BJP, AAP Spar Over 'Paid News' Charge After NYT Report 'Praises Sisodia'

By: News Desk

News18.com

Last Updated: August 20, 2022, 09:25 IST

Delhi, India

For representation: BJP (R) and AAP supporters. (Image: Reuters)

For representation: BJP (R) and AAP supporters. (Image: Reuters)

The report had triggered a war of words between the BJP and the Aam Aadmi Party after the CBI raided the residence of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia

The New York Times story on Delhi’s education system was based on “an impartial and on-the-ground reporting”, the American newspaper said on Friday, rejecting a ‘paid news’ charge that was being hurled between the BJP and AAP amid a CBI raid on Manish Sisodia’s residence.

The report had triggered a war of words between the BJP and the Aam Aadmi Party after the CBI raided the residence of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who also hold the education and excise portfolios, on Friday in connection with alleged irregularities in the framing and implementation of the AAP government’s excise policy.

AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj told reporters: “I challenge them (the BJP), use whatever money you have… whatever power you have. You try and get an article published in The New York Times if you think that is possible.”

The AAP also pointed out the copy that appeared in the Khaleej Times credited NYT for the content, and that Delhi government had no hand in its publication.

Bharadwaj’s sarcastic retort came after several BJP leaders, including union minister Meenakshi Lekhi and the party’s IT cell in-charge, Amit Malviya, accused the AAP of paying The New York Times for good press.

AAP MP Raghav Chadha dismissed the BJP’s allegations, telling reporters, “… (the BJP) is the richest political party… they should appear on the front page of the New York Times every day if someone can buy them.”

“No news of any BJP leader was ever printed there. BJP calls itself the biggest party in the world. It’s the richest political party. They should appear on New York Times’ front page daily if someone can buy them,” he said.

But the BJP fronted the attack on the AAP on Friday.

“How is it that the New York Times and Khaleej Times carry exactly the same article, word for word, authored by the same person, same pictures (that too of a private school?)” Malviya said. Arvind Kejriwal’s best defence is paid promotion, he said.

He attached a 33-second edited video in which Kejriwal says, “America is the richest country in the world, and The New York Times is its largest newspaper. Being featured in The New York Times is extremely difficult.”

Punit Agarwal, the head of the BJP’s Delhi IT cell, launched a similar attack.

He tweeted about the same article appearing in two publications: “This is not breaking news, Arvind Kejriwal. This is known as paid advertising. Manish Sisodia will have to go where he belongs. That is a prison.”

Lekhi stated: “(Kejriwal) admits that ‘having news published’ in The New York Times is difficult. How long will you continue to spend public funds on advertisements? Minister or marketer in charge?”

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first published:August 20, 2022, 09:11 IST
last updated:August 20, 2022, 09:25 IST