Did Sudhir Chaudhary force his COVID-19 positive colleagues come to office? Zee News editor says his statement has been twisted amidst growing demand for police action


Did Sudhir Chaudhary force his COVID-19 positive colleagues come to the office? Zee News editor has now explained that his statement had been twisted amidst growing demand for police action. This was after Twitter exploded in anger as Zee News confirmed that 28 of its staff members had tested positive for coronavirus. A journalist took to Twitter alleging Tablighi Jamaat-like discriminatory treatment being meted out to own colleagues by those working for WION, Zee Media’s English TV channel. This prompted Chaudhary to imply that those testing positive for COVID-19 had shown the courage to come to the office instead of sitting at home and creating memes.

The tweet by journalist Aveek Sen had claimed, “Sudhir Chaudhary gave a motivational speech to all employees this afternoon. He said, “Ghabra kyun rahe ho? Mai bhi carrier ho sakta hun. Par kaam kar raha hun na.” Then threatened those who took leave. “Jo log bahana banake office nahi aa rahe hai, unko hum dekh rahe hai…Kab tak nahi aayenge? 5-10-15 din.” As the media industry is hit by low ads due to recession, he exploits them. Last year prominent news outlets sacked 100+ at a go. Corona came with salary cuts. People are afraid of losing their jobs. And he exploits this.”

Reacting to Sen’s charge, Chaudhary wrote, “Team @ZeeNews is on the frontline, while social media stone pelters spread rumours. Those who are infected had the option of sitting at home & sharing memes. They came to work because they’re committed professionals. If you can’t show them respect, don’t expose your spiteful selves!”

Chaudhary’s tweet prompted many to conclude that the Zee News editor had finally confessed to forcing his staff to work even after being infected by coronavirus. Advertising executive Joy Das asked, “This is Proof. After the first case, everyone was not quarantined. They came to work and were in frontline. This is deliberate. Why do they want to defeat India in the fight against Corona? Why do they hate this country so much? #CoronaZeehad.”

Journalist Arvind Gunasekar wrote, “If the infected persons had come to work then it’s a violation of guidelines issued under Disaster Management Act, Epidemic Diseases Act and also Sec 269 and 188 of IPC.”

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah wrote, “Since when has isolation for infected people become optional? We’ve had 50+ cops tested positive in Kashmir today. Should they come to work to show how dedicated they are? Hopefully they are home sharing memes which is what these infected Zee people should have been doing!”

Faced with growing demand for criminal action for allegedly forcing his COVID-19 staff to come to office, the controversial Zee News editor wrote, “There’s a malicious campaign going on to distort my words & target @ZeeNews. Setting the record straight- 1. No infected employee came to work. One person had been away from work since Monday & tested positive on Friday 2. All his contacts were tested & immediately quarantined.”

Earlier Zee News had confirmed that 28 staff working for the controversial TV channel had tested positive for COVID-19 prompting the channel’s editor Sudhir Chaudhary to make a desperate plea stating that his colleagues were not ‘perpetrators.’