No doubt many of my readers will be aware of the horrendous debacle at India TV which resulted in them broadcasting a report with a fake photo of Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS) “performing” the nikah of the Taleban terrorist, Baitullah Mehsud in Afghanistan.
Of course, Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS) never performed this nikah and during the time of the said nikah, Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS) was in Mumbai, not Afghanistan.
The TV channel has published an apology and also aired an apology for the indicident which can be seen here:
The source image and the doctored image can also be seen below:
Without making any attempt to justify what is obviously abhorrent or non-existent editorial control, I do have a suspicion regarding how this came to pass. Rather than a deliberate attempt to slander Dawoodi Bohras, it is more likely the case that the “reporter” (and I use this word in the loosest term possible) did a Google Search on “nikah”, and found these results:
The first usable photo became the “source” for the doctored “news report”. While this in no means justifies what happened and it should never have happened to begin with, it does mean that objectively, there was likely no intended malice towards Dawoodi Bohras.
Does it excuse the event? Absolutely not. Does it mean that it’s acceptable for news stations to doctor images to fake news events? No way. Everything that happened here should never have happened. But I think it does provide an insight into how it came about.
Also of interest to some readers may be the search engine referral statistics for Planet Bohra on 8 April, 2009. I’ve made these available as a PDF.