It's the best of times for the hunters of fake news and planted stories, those who are filing them, and the media outlets that are publishing them.
It's a time when the falsehood and fraud of a certain Aam Aadmi is fast unraveling and that Aam Aadmi has been left with hardly anything sensible to say.
Just glide through the Web to see what these fake news and planted stories are, who are the reporters filing them, and what are the outlets publishing them.
If your critical faculties vis-à-vis media are alive, you should be able to spot them.
These stories are always based on unnamed "sources" who usually blame certain people for certain developments, but the reporters never mean to include in their stories the version of the people blamed or to ask basic questions as to the narrative put forth by the unnamed "sources".
Doing the round for some days and attributed to unnamed "AAP sources" is a ridiculous story that says: "Arvind Kejriwal averted a midnight coup within AAP, engineered by Kumar Vishwas".
This fake news is based, as usual, on unnamed "AAP sources".
The ridiculous thing about this story is that the reporter and his/her media outlet is willing to believe "sources" from AAP that just a few days ago announced that not only the crisis brought about by a disaffected Kumar Vishwas had been resolved, but he had also been given the charge of Rajasthan as a peace offering.
In fact, the same AAP had announced at the time of resolution of 'Vishwas crisis' that party legislator Amanatullah Khan was made to resign from the political affairs committee precisely for the reason that he'd alleged that Vishwas was planning such a coup.
(It's like you announce on Monday that your differences with your spouse have been resolved. "We are again a happy family," you tweet with a smiling picture with your spouse. And on Wednesday, you secretly let it be known to the world that your spouse wanted to kill you and you had caught her/him loading the gun.)
The quiet, sober, unbiased, genteel, very "English-Vinglish" media outlets that have published this transparently idiotic plant of a "news" are no other than the following.
1. The Wire, run by Siddharth Varadarajan.
Filed under the byline, 'The Wire Analysis', the story says: "According to AAP sources, one legislator called Vishwas on the phone in Kejriwal’s presence and was told by him that 34 MLAs were already on board to effect a change of leadership and only a couple more were needed to get a majority in the assembly."
2. NDTV, run by Prannoy Roy.
Filed by Sonal Mehrotra Kapoor, the story says: "This version of events, as provided by AAP sources, has not been denied by the Chief Minister or his office so far."
3. The Quint, run by Raghav Behl.
Filed by Sharad Gupta, the story says: "By most accounts, the Kejriwal-Vishwas fracas could have potentially taken a turn for the worse. The AAP government would have fallen and Kejriwal could have been consigned to history."
4. Janta Ka Reporter, run by Rifat Jawaid.
Filed under the byline 'JKR Staff', the story says: "Days after the feud in Aam Aadmi Party appeared to have settled, new revelations suggest that Delhi chief minister, Arvind Kejriwal too was aware of an alleged bid to take over the party by Kumar Vishwas".
5. The Deccan Post, run by Ravi Chander Ponnala.
Filed under no byline, the story says: "Party sources say that they remain convinced that Mr Vishwas was incentivised to move against Mr Kejriwal by the BJP, which won the local elections in Delhi last month...".
6. India Herald
Filed by Prasad Geeta, the story says: "Buzz is few MLAs and a young officer on special duty working in the office of (Kapil) Mishra alerted Kejriwal about it".