The Indian media were all gaga over the issue that the Moody’s Analytics, a division of the New York-headquartered credit rating agency Moody’s, pointed to the Prime Minister’s silence on “ethnic tensions” associated with the lynching of a Muslim man in Uttar Pradesh on the suspicion of cow slaughter and a spate of murder of rationalists. The MSM said that the rating agency Moody’s warned Modi to rein in his leaders or risk losing credibility.
A section of media rejoiced over this report and started propagating their narrative of growing intolerance in India. The Congress, although the report called the Opposition obstructionist, latched on to the unflattering remarks against Modi to taunt him for promoting the rating agency’s views during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. (HT report).
But today Ministry of Information & Broadcasting released the statement condemning the media for irresponsible reporting. It said that the report was the personal opinion of a Junior Associate Economist employed with Moody’s Analytics and had nothing to do with Moody’s Investor Services, which provides Ratings services.
Here is the full statement,
It is with regret the Government of India notes the irresponsible and distorted reporting by certain sections of the Indian media on what was the personal opinion of a Junior Associate Economist employed with Moody’s Analytics.
It is also surprising that no due diligence was done and the readers were not informed about the difference between Moody’s Analytics and Moody’s Investor Services. Opinion of a Junior Associate Economist employed with Moody’s Analytics has been splashed all across implying it as the opinion of Moody’s Analytics.
The Government notes with distress that the personal opinion of a junior analyst was passed off as a commentary on India by a Rating Agency by the media to buttress the narrative it wants to portray.
The media has a great role in enriching our national discourse, and such episodes seriously hamper its credibility, while spreading misinformation among the masses.