On May 3, videos of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi went viral where he was seen attending a party in Nepal. Congress leader Randeep Surjewala raised objections over the controversy that erupted around Gandhi and said he had gone to attend the wedding of a friend. Reportedly, Gandhi has gone to attend the wedding of former CNN journalist Sumnima Udas.
Rahul Gandhi went to a friendly country Nepal to participate in a pvt marriage function of a friend who also happens to be a journalist… last I checked, having family & friends & attending marriage ceremonies is a matter of our culture &civilization: Randeep Surjewala, Congress pic.twitter.com/zAF1Ec0MEt
— ANI (@ANI) May 3, 2022
Udas was associated with CNN before she left the post in 2017. Born in Nepal, Sumnima grew up in various countries, including the United States, Switzerland, Myanmar, Pakistan, Russia and Jordan. She got her bachelors from Washington and Lee University and did a master’s from Oxford University. Udas started her career with CNN in 2001 and continued her association with different chapters of the Media organization. From 2010 to 2012, she worked as a producer at CNN’s Delhi office.
Udas has a controversial past when it comes to reporting about India. Here are a few tweets that raise questions about Rahul Gandhi’s friend.
‘Nepal should have issued new map decades ago’
In May 2020, the Nepal government sparked controversy by issuing a new map in which it had declared parts of India as its own. The friendship between Nepal and China, followed by the new map issued by Nepal, attracted sharp criticism from the Indian government. Amidst the controversy, Udas had shared a report from CNN penned by CNN Senior Editor Sugam Pokharel and said, “Nepal issues a new map… should have been done decades ago. Thank you for the write-up Sugam.”
Notably, after Nepal issued the map in May 2020 and then later in June 2020, when they passed the bill in the lower house to update the country’s map, India had issued a statement and rejected its claims on Indian areas of Limpiyadhura, Lipulekh and Kalapani in the updated map. Then-External Ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava stated, “We have noted that the House of Representatives of Nepal has passed a constitution amendment bill for changing the map of Nepal to include parts of Indian territory. We have already made our position clear on this matter.”
Udas alleged India faced a vaccine crisis due to ‘PM’s mind-boggling reluctance to buy vaccine’
In 2021, Udas shared a report of Time written by Debashish Roy Chowdhary. She quoted the report that suggested, “The vaccine crisis that stares at the world’s most vulnerable countries today is rooted in Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mind-boggling reluctance to buy enough vaccines in time.”
In reality, India has administered over 180 crore doses of Covid-19 vaccines. Apart from Covishield and Covaxin, many other vaccines have been approved by the Indian government to ensure every eligible citizen gets the vaccine and the booster shot.
When the report was published, India was in its fifth month of the Covid vaccine drive and speculating that a nation with such a vast population would not be able to complete targets was farfetched at that time. Instead of waiting for the right time, many media houses and journalists, including Udas, had targeted the Indian government and had even spread blatant speculative pieces spelling doom and disaster.
As of now, India has administered more doses compared to all Western countries and is providing support to other developing nations to complete their vaccination drives.
She had also shared a report by propagandist author Arundhati Roy in which she had called PM Modi a dangerous man and alleged that the Indian government failed to manage the Covid pandemic. As is usual with Arundhati Roy, the write up was low on facts and high on rants.
Udas targeted the Indian govt on CAA with propaganda-filled reports
In December 2019, she shared NDTV’s propaganda-filled report to target India on Citizen Amendment Act. Notably, the act was passed by the Indian government to facilitate persecuted minorities that are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Christians in neighbouring countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The left-liberal section of the society and media spread lies claiming that India has passed the bill to stop Muslims from getting Indian citizenship.
Udas raised objections over S Jaishankar’s statement on Buddha
In 2020, she raised objections when External Minister S Jaishankar called Buddha ‘one of the greatest Indians of all times’. She said, “It is a matter of great significance that Gautam Buddha was born in Lumbini, present-day Nepal and that he attained enlightenment in Bodhgaya, present-day India. Both Nepalis and Indians should feel honoured and humbled by this incredible shared heritage and legacy.”
She added, “Any attempt to singlehandedly “own” the Buddha seems futile as, for hundreds of millions of Buddhists, the Buddha is universal. Rather than making this a cause for controversy, we ought to try to understand and embrace the true power of this shared sacred legacy.
Udas’s husband is a China-based businessman
Udas is reportedly getting married to Nima Martin Sherpa.
Husband of Sumnima Udas, Nima Martin Sherpa, is based on China for past 12 yrs and is running a company in Guangzou by the name of SML Holdings. Sumnima reported extensively on Nirbhaya case. Now let us check about the father of the girl -Bhim Udas! pic.twitter.com/PKLPjYDS5q
— Alok Bhatt (@alok_bhatt) May 3, 2022
He is a China-based businessman who runs a company in Guangzhou by the name SML Holdings which is a fashion company according to Sherpa’s LinkedIn profile.