A private comment turned out to be a major embarrassment for prime-time news anchor Anjana Om Kashyap after she was heard comparing right-wing Shiv Sena’s leader Aditya Thackeray to India’s main opposition party’s former chief Rahul Gandhi.
"Ye Shiv Sena ka Rahul Gandhi Saabit Hoga, Likhke Rakh Lijiye (He's set to be the Rahul Gandhi of Shiv Sena, mark my words)," Kashyap was heard making a remark in Hindi while a video clip of Thackeray’s response to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was being live telecast.
अंजना को बोल रही हो न दीदी आप🤣👈 pic.twitter.com/G3qe3nPwZc— अदिति जोशी (@ADITIJOSHI01) September 21, 2019
Kashyap had to issue an apology and clarify her comments that not only ridiculed Thackarey but also appeared to be poke fun at Rahul Gandhi, who recently resigned as Congress party president after the party won just 53 seats in the 524-member parliament.
"My remark on Aditya Thackeray which is being spread with malice was out of lapse of judgment. I regret it. This, by no means, reflects the views of the channel or the network," said Kashyap in a tweet.
My remark on Aditya Thackeray which is being spread with malice was out of lapse of judgement. I regret it. This, by no means, reflects the views of the channel or the network.— Anjana Om Kashyap (@anjanaomkashyap) September 21, 2019
Her comment also drew a sharp response from Shiv Sena leader Priyanka Chaturvedi, who asked her to focus on journalism instead of predicting the future like a "parrot on the street."
Also, its ok to call others Pappu or speak about their intelligence. But not knowing you’re on air, after decades of working in that space and voicing your ‘expert’ views definitely exposes your ‘intelligence’. Just saying.— Priyanka Chaturvedi (@priyankac19) September 21, 2019
कौन क्या साबित होगा वो तो समय ही तय करेगा, पर कुछ लोग तो बहुत पहले से ही भाड़े के टट्टु साबित हो चुके हैं! पत्रकारित्ता पर ध्यान दें, भविष्यवाणी तो तोता भी सड़कों पर पैसे से करता है।— Priyanka Chaturvedi (@priyankac19) September 21, 2019
Her gaffe also evoked a sharp response from netizens who mocked her online.
#AnjanaOmKashyap's apology to Shiv Sena -- that's what it is -- is the latest example of her spinelessness.— Manisha Pande (@MnshaP) September 22, 2019
In June this year, she heckled a doctor in Muzzafarpur during the deadly AES outbreak. Something she should have apologised for but didn't. https://t.co/b5AzN299d5
#AnjanaOmKashyap .if it is right video then very sadful & shameful @anjanaomkashyap on you. As a true media reporter you should be unbiashed. This type of views have negative impact on people's faith on media. I request @aajtak to take action against her and spread love and faith https://t.co/1p7wlNQJQG— Pappu Kumar Gupta (@Pk_gupt377) September 22, 2019
Previously, Kashyap was widely criticised for entering a hospital and interrupting doctors while they provided aid to children suffering from Acute Encephalitis Syndrome in Muzaffarpur, Bihar.