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Wall Street Journal scribe was almost expelled from India for 'misreporting' Delhi riots

Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said that a complaint was registered against Eric Bellman

Friday March 13, 2020 11:09 PM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

Wall Street Journal Report on Delhi Riots

New Delhi: India on Friday was mulling over the option of deporting The Wall Street Journal's South Asia deputy bureau chief for "misreporting" Delhi riots in which over 50 people were killed last month. However, the government denied that it had made any such decision.

Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said that a complaint was registered against Eric Bellman, the WSJ South Asia deputy bureau chief based in New Delhi, by a private individual on the government's online grievance redressal platform.

"Referring the complaint to the related office is a routine matter as per standard procedure. No such decision on deportation has been taken by the Ministry of External Affairs," Kumar said.

However, government-funded Prasar Bharati News Services had earlier tweeted screen shots of the complaint which was filed by an under secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs, Vinesh K Kalra, saying that the ministry has asked the Indian embassy in the US to "look into the request for immediate deportation of Bellman for his "anti-India behaviour".

The official had complained to the embassy about Bellman's "controversial" reportage on the killing of an Intelligence Bureau staffer named Ankit Sharma.

WSJ Report on Delhi Riots

The WSJ had reported that Ankit Sharma's brother had said that he was killed by a mob belonging to a particular religious community. Ankit's brother later told Indian media that he never spoke to the WSJ reporter.

The WSJ has stood by its report quoting Sharma's brother - Ankur, saying that they have his quote's recording. WSJ in its report said that 'rioters armed with stones, rods, knives and even sword' had charged into the street where Sharma's home was situated. Quoting Ankur the WSJ report said "they (rioters) shouted 'Jai Shri Ram', some even wore helmets'.

After the Prasar Bharati tweet got circulated widely on social media, the government backtracked and said that no such decision has been taken.

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