Amidst the Corona pandemic, social media and TV news channels have kept fans of ‘sensational news’ on a diet of speculations and controversies surrounding the mysterious deaths of Disha Salian and Sushant Singh Rajput. Amidst the Corona pandemic, social media and TV news channels have kept fans of ‘sensational news’ on a diet of speculations and controversies surrounding the mysterious deaths of Disha Salian and Sushant Singh Rajput.
This is a case study on how a single Facebook post caused a domino effect of believability and mass hate for Maharashtra’s Cabinet Minister & MLA, Aaditya Thackeray.
There are so many theories around the tragic demise of two young and talented citizens of India. Right from blaming Sushant’s girl friend Rhea Chakraborty for abetment to suicide to Kangana Ranaut blaming Bollywood and nepotism for Sushant’s death to reports of Sushant being involved in drug problems. Netizens have also taken many big names of actors and politicians in this case. One name facing the most flak is that of Aaditya Thackeray – Indian Politician serving as Cabinet Minister of Tourism and Environment Government of Maharashtra. Aaditya is also a MLA of Maharashtra Legislative Assembly from Mumbai, Maharashtra.
Biggest conspiracy theory: involvement of Mumbai’s guardian minister, Aaditya Thackeray in #SSR & Disha’s tragic deaths. None of the 3 investigating agencies have confirmed @AUThackeray’s role. #UddhavThackeray #AdityaThackeray @CMOMaharashtra @ShivSenaTweet
Slander & Mass Hate:
There is a lot happening on social media and TV news media right now. Slander, memes, trolling, blame, the Thackeray family is facing it all. If you check Uddhav Thackeray’s & Aaditya Thackeray’s social media, you will see trolls spitting fire in the form of words. While both father and son seem to be going about their daily business, there is a lot of unrest among netizens who are spewing venom on social media. Uddhav Thackeray is being criticised for the demolition of Kangana Ranaut’s home and being called Drithrashtra from the Indian epic, Mahabharata. Aditya is labelled as Baby Penguin and a sex fiend, paedophile amongst other slander.
Who planted the rumour of Aaditya Thackeray’s involvement in the untimely and tragic deaths of Disha Salian and Sushant Singh Rajput?
One of the earliest posts on the involvement of Aaditya Thackeray came from a Patna-based activist called Prashant Kumar who published a post on his Insaaf SSR Facebook page on July 13, 2020.
It’s interesting to note that he starts the post by saying:
शायद ऐसा कुछ हुआ हो….या ना भी हुआ हो..कुछ साक्ष्य और तथ्यों तथा वैचारिक शब्दों को जोड़ कर पेज के एक सदस्य की…….(सच्ची/काल्पनिक) कहानी।
As of today, this post has about 55 shares on Facebook and 15 comments. This post went viral on WhatsApp without the disclaimer that appears in the first two lines of the post. It was translated into English, again without the disclaimer that the information could be false. The WhatsApp junkies lapped it up and the believability factor creeped in.
The plot seemed like it was straight out of a Bollywood movie and the population hungry for sensational news lapped it up. They shared the post without the disclaimer and thus adding fuel to this rumour.
Following this, on August 3, 2020, Arnab Goswami called Prashant on his channel, Republic TV. In this interview, one sees Prashant claiming that Disha Salian’s friend called him. The caller requested anonymity and then revealed the story of how some ‘big names’ misbehaved with her leading to her untimely death. (Watch the video below).
Following this interview on Republic TV, Prashant spoke to a lot of YouTubers & news portals. Each interview and parallel articles/theories led to the domino effect of believability & mass negativity against Aaditya Thackeray and his father, CM Uddhav Thackeray.
Watch this interview on YouTube Channel, Bollywood Spy. In this, Prashant Kumar claims that big names of society and Bollywood are with him. However, he doesn’t reveal any significant names. He doesn’t give any facts nor does he reveal the name of the “caller”.
In the above video, Prashant Kumar says that more than 25K people are supporting him. It’s interesting to note that the Insaaf SSR Facebook Page has only 4919 page likes and 5325 followers.
On August 4, 2020, Aaditya Thackeray broke his silence and issued a statement to the press. Where he rubbishes the rumour and calls it a dirty political ploy by vested interests.
Popular news website, News Laundry probed Prashant Kumar about his allegations. He gave muddled answers that raise doubts on the authenticity of the claim. You can read the article here.
There are three big agencies that are investigating the deaths of Disha Salian and Sushant Singh Rajput. Not a single agency has summoned any of the names that Prashant’s post mentions.
Not a single official report from these agencies even remotely show the involvement of Aaditya Thackeray in the deaths of Disha and Sushant. Despite this, we see a personal attack on the CM of Maharashtra and his minister son.
The media and netizens are extensively blaming Maharashtra’s CM, Uddhav Thackeray, for his actions against Kangana Ranaut but that is a different topic of discussion. Let’s not mix the two.
– Have the Indian public fallen prey to ‘false news’ and propaganda politics?
– Is there any basis to the claims made against Aaditya Thackeray?
– Is the Indian Media crucifying the Thackeray family based on a rumour?
Would love to know what you think. Leave your views in the comment box below.
Dear Readers, I, Mayura Amarkant, Founder of DiaryOfAnInsaneWriter have written the above article based on my experience as a Crisis Manager, having managed large-scale national crisis for brands and individuals. Indo-global SME Chamber recognised me for my work in the form of a national-level award as a Woman Business Leader in Digital Marketing and PR. The views expressed above are completely my own. This is NOT a sponsored or paid post. The intention of the above post is to make people think and deliberate on the topic. It doesn’t make any direct or indirect allegations on the involvement of any party in the SSR Case or otherwise. The information depicted above is from the public domain.
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