India ‘Warns’ Swedish Newspaper Over Pranab Bofors Interview
India ‘warns’ Swedish newspaper, asks for retraction of parts Pranab Mukherjee’s interview which include Bofors.
The Government of India has reportedly “warned” the Swedish national daily Dagens Nyhetter to remove sections of an interview with President Pranab Mukherjee which talks about Bofors, failing which the Presidential visit could be cancelled, the Swedish daily reported.
“In a telephone conversation with the DN prior to the publication of the article ,the Ambassador made a direct request that DN was to retract sections of the interview mentioning Bofors. She also warned that the planned visit was at risk of being cancelled,” the influential daily has written.
A copy of the letter written by the Indian Ambassador to Sweden has been secured by The News Minute (TNM). In the letter, Banashri Bose Harrison, the Ambassador of India to Sweden & Latvia, says that an off record ‘slip of the tongue’ was reported during the interview, and that the third question on Bofors asked by the interviewer was portrayed as the first question in the aired version.
The daily refused to expunge parts of the interview. “The president became engaged and was upset when Bofors was mentioned during a question regarding how we can avoid corruption today. Of course we had to tell our readers about his reaction,” Peter Wolodarski, Editor-in-Chief of DN said.
Swedish media has been closely following the reactions in India and Wolodarski said the response to his interview shows that there public in India is as interested if not more than in Sweden about the whole story.
At the end of the interview, Wolodarski reportedly quipped that the President had mixed up Sweden and Switzerland several times in the interview. The Ambassador called that “unprofessional and unethical.” India has also accused DN of misleading the audience by shortening the interview.
“I find the Ambassador’s reaction regretful. It is surprising that someone representing one of the world’s largest democracy is trying to micromanage which questions we should ask a head of state and which answers should be published,” Woladarski said.
Read the full story on DN here.
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