In the days before the launch of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government in May 2019, the news media was abuzz with the launch.
The news was being shared on WhatsApp.
It was a massive news event and news was everywhere.
What’s more, the prime minister was the first Indian leader to hold a rally in New Delhi on May 26.
Modi’s team put out a list of the best news stories of the day.
The list included, for instance, a story about the state of the economy.
The next day, the Prime Minister’s Office sent a congratulatory message to the editor of a news portal.
“Congratulations to the Editor of the Economic Times, Arvind Sharma for his outstanding coverage of the economic news,” the PMO said.
Sharma, a seasoned reporter, had written about the government’s ambitious goal of boosting growth in five years.
But the news portal he was covering, Economic Times of Delhi, had been a little more cautious.
Sharma and his colleagues had covered the prime ministers visits to the US and the UK, as well as the protests in India’s capital.
“When you cover a major event like a rally, and the government is there, and people are cheering, you are doing your job,” Sharma told me.
But Sharma’s editors were sceptical.
“It’s a big news story, but it’s a bit of a story,” one editor told me, and added, “it is the news we would expect from the paper.”
Sharma was happy to hear that the prime ministerial team was watching.
He and his team wanted to take stock of the news before it reached the paper.
Sharma told The Times that he was not happy with the fact that they didn’t even have a copy of the paper with the headline of “India to hold first prime minister rally in six years”.
Sharma told us that he had written an email to the newspaper’s editor about the “fake news” they had picked out, and he sent it to them.
But he says that the editors did not take his complaint seriously.
“I told them the news is being distributed to all the papers in the country,” he said.
When Sharma told the editors that the story had a major political impact, they replied that the Prime Ministers office had not made any such announcement.
“They did not have any reference to the rally or any political impact,” Sharma said.
“So, I said to them, ‘I will send an email in two days asking the paper to remove the article.’
I also wrote a letter to the Prime Minster himself.
But they did not reply.
I sent another email to them and they did reply.
“The third letter was, ‘We are waiting for your response. “
Then I wrote a third letter to them,” he told me by phone.
“The third letter was, ‘We are waiting for your response.
Please send a copy to the PM Office, and tell them the article has been removed.’
And they sent a copy.”
Sharma, who has been writing about the news for nearly 30 years, said that he did not expect that the PM’s office would have a reaction so quick.
“To me, it was not that the article was wrong,” he recalled.
“In fact, it’s the way it was written, that was a mistake.”
Sharma told HuffPost India that his initial reaction was that it was an “embarrassment”.
He said that, if he had received a call from an editor about a story, he would have taken it as an opportunity to explain to them that there was a major issue.
But when he went to check, Sharma said that the office did not respond to his emails and he did nothing to correct the situation.
“That’s why I feel bad,” Sharma continued.
“Because the PM, he’s the prime minster, is the head of state.
He’s the president of the country.
I would have appreciated that he would know what I am talking about. “
He has a very high opinion of his own press.
I would have appreciated that he would know what I am talking about.
And, I am a journalist.”
Sharma said he felt like he was being ignored.
“Even when I am not working in a newspaper, when I come to an event, I would get asked by the journalists what’s the story that I am working on,” he added.
“And, if I say, ‘The news that I have written about India is wrong’, they would go and look up the article on my blog.”
Sharma says that even though he was writing about politics, he was also writing about other things, such as his own family and health.
He has always been wary of going to events and has never been interested in politics.
“But, there was this big event happening in New York City.
And then I was sitting on a plane, and someone in front of me said, ‘Are you ready?’ And