Rajdeep Sardesai, a well-known journalist with a national news channel on Thursday (August 13) tweeted that former President Pranab Mukherjee, who is in a criticial condition and is on ventilator for last three days, has died but he deleted the tweet within minutes after netizens called him out for peddling fake news.
Soon after the fake news was tweeted, Pranab Mukherjee's son and daughter also clarified on his health and castigated those spreading rumours.
Mukherjee's son Abhijit stated that his father was haemodynamically stable now. "My Father Shri Pranab Mukherjee is still alive & haemodynamically stable! Speculations & fake news being circulated by reputed Journalists on social media clearly reflects that Media in India has become a factory of Fake News," tweeted Abhijit Mukherjee.
My Father Shri Pranab Mukherjee is still alive & haemodynamically stable !
Speculations & fake news being circulated by reputed Journalists on social media clearly reflects that Media in India has become a factory of Fake News .
— Abhijit Mukherjee (@ABHIJIT_LS) August 13, 2020
Mukherjee’s daughter Sharmistha also tweeted that "rumours about his father is false".
Rumours about my father is false. Request, esp’ly to media, NOT to call me as I need to keep my phone free for any updates from the hospital
— Sharmistha Mukherjee (@Sharmistha_GK) August 13, 2020
The trolling by netizens also forced the journalist to issue a denial and as a face-saving measure he said that though Pranab Mukherjee is criticial he is still fighting on.
The journalist also apologised for falling for fake news being circulated on Pranab Mukherjee's death.
Army's Research and Referral Hospital in Delhi, where the former President is currently admitted, said in an official statement on Thursday (August 13) that his condition remained unchanged on Thursday morning. The statement added that the former President is deeply comatose with stable vital parameters and he continues to be on ventilatory support.
The 84-year-old former President was admitted to hospital on Monday (August 10) in a critical condition. Workup at the hospital revealed a large clot in Mukherjee's brain for which he underwent emergency life saving surgery. Post surgery the former President continues to remain critical on ventilatory support.
Mukherjee was a senior Congress leader before he was elected as India's 13th President. He served as President from July 2012 to 2017.