• Mon. Mar 13th, 2023

India’s ANI continues to spread disinformation against China, Pakistan: report

A representational image showing fake news. — Unsplash
A representational image showing fake news. — Unsplash 

Asian News International (ANI), a leading Indian news agency, continues to push anti-Pakistan and China narratives in India based on “non-existent” sources.

The EU DisinfoLab revealed this in its latest investigation report, which is a follow-up on two previous investigations published in 2019 and 2020.

In its previous reports, the Brussels-based non-profit group accused ANI of quoting defunct — EP Today and EU Chronicles — which were “two fake media outlets supposedly specialising in EU affairs that were, in fact, created to push anti-Pakistan/China narratives in India”.

ANI, which offers content to many well-established media across India, continues to spread disinformation. “The narratives pushed by these fake personae and/or organisations are almost entirely about criticising Pakistan and China, countries that are not India’s greatest allies on the international stage,” said the report called ‘Bad Sources (BS).’ 

The investigation reveals that the news agency repeatedly quoted a think tank that was dissolved in 2014. Moreover, it has been using quotes from non-existent journalists, bloggers and geopolitical experts. 

Fake personae, self-described as James Bond fans, basketball players and management consultants, became geopolitical experts quoted by ANI numerous times on topics such as Pakistan’s army doctrines and China’s ‘wolf warrior diplomacy’,” said the DisinfoLab. 

“A think tank, dissolved in 2014, is now quoted about twice a week by ANI,” as per the report. 

— EU DisinfoLab
— EU DisinfoLab 

“The think tank’s website falsely mentions real Canadian university professors as participants in a conference that they never attended, even concocting false quotes by these academics,” it said. 

It said that these narratives were then republished on several other media outlets. 

“Besides ANI and those outlets republishing its content, barely any other established media covered the reports produced by these ‘Bad Sources’ (BS) – the name we gave to this investigation,” said the DisinfoLab

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