Right-wing website Swarajya and its editorial director R Jagannathan were recently singled out by the BBC for peddling fake news. But, on Thursday, Jagannathan, also known as Jaggi, became a butt of jokes on Twitter for his crazy justification of unemployment.
Responding to a news story on the unemployment rate in India reaching to 45-year high, Jagannathan had said that this was a positive sign for the country. His tweet read, “Need to read this number with nuance. A higher unemployment rate indicates that more people are actively looking for work. This is half positive indicating that many millions now believe jobs will be available even if not of satisfactory kind.”
Jagannathan’s desperate spin to a news story that highlighted the utter failure of the BJP government at the Centre and Prime Minister Narendra in providing jobs in India backfired spectacularly. No sooner had he posted his tweet, social media users including journalists began to post jokes, ridiculing the Swarajya boss.
User Rajeev Kumar sarcastically wrote that he was reporting his tweet to the International Cricket Council. He wrote, “Reporting your tweet to ICC. No human can spin this much without having a suspect bowling action.” Youtuber Dhruv Rathee called it a Bhakt Logic as he wrote, “A higher poverty rate indicates that more people are actively looking to get out of poverty. This is half positive indicating that many millions now believe they can get out of poverty even if they cannot.”
Supreme Court lawyer Sanjay Hegde tweeted, “A higher hunger rate, means more people are actively looking for food. This is a half positive indicating…………”
Journalist Sadanand Dhume tweeted, “The last thing the BJP needs on this question is more “nuance.” It should instead make an honest admission that demonetization was a spectacularly stupid move, and add a public pledge not to take economic advice from cranks and crackpots in the future.” User Roshan Rai wrote sarcastically, “Yes & a higher hunger rate indicates that more people are looking for food.”
Journalist Suvojit questioned Jagannathan’s journalism as he wrote, “If there were any lingering doubts about Jaggi’s journalism, this is conclusive evidence.”
A report by the National Sample Survey Office on its periodic labour force survey on Thursday had said that the unemployment rate in India had risen to its highest level for 45 years. According to Business Standard newspaper, which access the report, the unemployment rate stood at 6.1 percent in 2017-18. The unemployment, according to the report, was higher in urban areas with 7.8 percent as compared to 5.3 percent in rural areas of the country.
Jagannathan’s desperation to justify the record growth in unemployment in India was an attempt to hide Modi’s embarrassment ahead of this year’s Lok Sabha polls. Congress President Rahul Gandhi has been attacking the prime minister for not fulfilling his election promise of providing jobs to ‘two crore people’ every year.
When asked about his inability to fulfill his key election promise on job creation, Modi had told Zee News last year, “Somebody please tell me if someone sells pakaude, fried Indian snack, and earns Rs 200 by the end of the day, will you not call it a job? Which register mentions that a man is earning Rs 200 every day? It’s a simple thing to understand that the banks have given loans to 10 crore people. Which means that these many people have earned their livelihood.”