Times of India sports journalist Manne Ratnakar is under flak for misquoting badminton player PV Sindhu in the commonwealth shooting issue. The Olympic medalist took to Twitter to expose the blatant misquoting by the journalist in the July 31st issue of Times of India.
Sindhu tweeted, “Extremely disappointed to see this kind of journalism by Mr Manne Ratnakar of @timesofindia who had spoken to me yesterday. He has misquoted me where in I clearly said as players we all want to participate in any sports event but I would always.” She further tweeted, “Support what Indian olympic association & our government decide. I NEVER said that I urge IOA not to shun CWG. Nation always comes first Jai hind”
Support what Indian olympic association & our government decide. I NEVER said that I urge IOA not to shun CWG. Nation always comes first
Jai hind pic.twitter.com/R7gdScEVaE
— Pvsindhu (@Pvsindhu1) July 31, 2019
On its front page yesterday, the newspaper mentioned, “After Bindra and Narang, PV Sindhu now urges Indian Olympic Association not to shun CWG over exclusion of shooting.”
PV Sindhu is clearly disappointed at the fact that a journalist could construe her words in such a manner. She had stated that she is going to support the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and the Indian government. Yet, Ratnakar went on to misquote her in order to make the story more eye-catching.
Another badminton player, the doubles specialist of the country, Jwala Gutta has offered her support to Sindhu by tweeting, “Lol..not the first time by him!”, implying, that Ratnakar has a penchant of indulging in unethical journalism.
Lol..not the first time by him!
— Gutta Jwala (@Guttajwala) July 31, 2019
Ahead of the commonwealth games in 2022, Birmingham (the host city for the year) has excluded shooting from the list of events, citing lack of suitable facilities. The shooting event has featured at every Commonwealth games since 1966, with the exception of Edinburgh in 1970. India is particularly perplexed at this decision as Indian shooters accounted for 16 of the country’s 66 medals, including seven golds, at last year’s Gold Coast Games, where the country finished third in the medals table; a rank, highly implausible if shooting hadn’t been included.
The decision to axe shooting has been highly arbitrary and self-centered, as the proposed location for shooting, at Bisley in Surrey was rejected with Birmingham 2022 chief executive Ian Reid stating that it “offered little or no benefit to the West Midlands”.
In this regard, the IOA president Narinder Batra has written a letter to sports minister Kiren Rijiju seeking a meeting to deliberate on the “proposed boycott”. The IOA also wrote to the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), staying they were “compelled to reflect on our standing within the Commonwealth movement”, and that the country was pulling out of the CGF’s general assembly in September.
A few sportspersons, including former shooter Abhinav Bindra, has voiced his opposition to pulling out of Birmingham 2022. He tweeted, “2/2 Boycotts don’t win you influence. They just make you irrelevant and punish other athletes. Would be far better if IOA did a campaign to load the CWG committees with their people and allies and push for the inclusion of shooting onto the core list of sports for the future.”
2/2 Boycotts don’t win you influence. They just make you irrelevant and punish other athletes. Would be far better if IOA did a campaign to load the CWG committees with their people and allies and push for the inclusion of shooting onto the core list of sports for the future.
— Abhinav Bindra OLY (@Abhinav_Bindra) July 28, 2019
Being an Olympic gold medalist in shooting, Abhinav Bindra has the right to voice his opinion on the proposed boycott. However, this does not give Times of India the liberty to include other sportspersons in his league. Misquoting the legendary badminton player for clickbait is certainly not acceptable.