Veteran journalist Rajdeep Sardesai has caused controversy with a tweet related to the Air India urination case, in which he unnecessarily brought religion into the debate by calling Shankar Mishra, the man who had urinated on an elderly woman, a Hindu. Sardesai tweeted, “So drunk biz man found urinating on Co passenger in flight is one Shekhar Mishra: what if his name was a Khan? Guess who would be doing cartwheels of outrage on prime time and social media? A Mishra or a Khan, law must be same for all as should response. Agree?”
So drunk biz man found urinating on Co passenger in flight is one Shekhar Mishra: what if his name was a Khan? Guess who would be doing cartwheels of outrage on prime time and social media? A Mishra or a Khan, law must be same for all as should response. Agree?. #AirIndiaHorror
— Rajdeep Sardesai (@sardesairajdeep) January 5, 2023
Sardesai’s tweet was met with widespread criticism on Twitter, with many accusing him of demeaning the issue and bringing religion into a matter that should be treated as a crime, rather than a communal issue. Bollywood director Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri was among those who spoke out against Sardesai’s tweet, writing, “The law is same for everyone. Be it Arfa or Rajdeep. It’s the media (vulture media, according to you) which discriminates. I am sure if it was a Khan, you would have called him a victim by now. Pl think and reflect.”
Sardesai quickly realized that his tweet may have been misunderstood and he defended his actions in a follow-up tweet, writing, “Dear @vivekagnihotri, yes law is same for all, but response is not. My tweet only shows mirror to those who when a Aftab commits heinous crime, put a entire community in the dock. Stop using dog whistles like love jehad/Corona jehad;forget Hindu vs Muslim, focus on crime not community!” Despite this defense, many have called for Sardesai to apologize for his controversial tweet.