AajTak journalist fired for tweets criticising PM Modi

AajTak journalist Shyam Meera Singh, has been fired by the India Today Group over tweets criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday.

“I am terminated from my channel Aaj Tak (India Today Group) for writing these two tweets on Prime Minister Modi,” Singh tweeted on Monday with the two screenshots of his earlier tweets.

Singh said that the India Today Group mailed him screenshots of two tweets, giving reasons for termination, which were on Prime Minister Modi.

One of his tweets on PM Modi read, “Who says Respect the Prime Minister. They should first ask Modi to respect the post of Prime Minister post. (Sic)”

The second tweet in Hindi read, “When I write something on Twitter here, some people start tagging my employer. They say, ‘sack him. Why don’t you sack him?’ But I post the next tweet with more vigor. I will not desist from writing about this. Modi is a shameless Prime Minister.”

Singh shared the screenshot of email of termination that he received from the HR of India Today Group.

“This is further to your continued social media violations, despite previous warnings. You are well versed with ITG’s Social Media and Code of Conduct policies which specifically advise to use social media for news that has been published or aired by the system and not for personal views. Besides being alerted on other breaches, you have received at least two formal warnings. Yet, the attached recent tweets show repeat transgressions. Regretfully, since you are unable to follow the guidelines you have signed and accepted at the time of your employment, that we deem mandatory from all staff to keep our ecosystem healthy and abuse free, we are unable to continue your services. This letter terminates your services and today, July 18th, 2021, may be considered your last working day” read the letter by Vanchha Garg, HR Business Partner of India Today Group Digital.

“I want to reiterate again and again and again. ‘Yes! Modi is a shameless prime minister’,” Singh said in another tweet, responding to the termination news.

India Today Group’s action prompted outrage on social media, with many criticising the media organisation’s loyalty to the saffron party and its government.

“India Today does not fire a journalist over #MeToo allegations, it does not fire journalists over hate speech but fires a journalist for putting out two tweets against Narendra Modi,” wrote award winning journalist and author Rana Ayyub.

“India today group making the point – modi is a shameless prime minister is not news for anyone,” tweets Hartosh Singh Bal, The Caravan’s political editor.