False message makes claims about NDTV and its founders Prannoy and Radhika Roy

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News channel NDTV has often been the target of false news and misleading information. A post widespread on social media and messaging platforms since 2017 claims that its founder Prannoy Roy is a Pakistani. The message, viral on Twitter and Facebook, also makes several other allegations against Roy and his wife and NDTV co-founder Radhika. It was posted to the Facebook page ‘RSS राष्ट्रीय स्वयंसेवक संघ’ (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh).

The claim had also garnered a lot of traction online back in 2017. Now, it is being circulated all over again, revived through Facebook’s ‘Memories’ feature.


We received a few requests on the Alt News official mobile app (Android, iOS) and WhatsApp number (+91 7600 11160) to verify the message.

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Apart from this, a photo of Prannoy Roy has been shared with a Hindi caption that says, “Is the head of NDTV a Pakistani?”

Fact-check

The viral message is false. In fact, it was investigated in June 2017 by several media organizations, including The Lallantop, iChowk, Fact Crescendo and the International Business Times.

1. Claim – CBI raided the home of NDTV founder Prannoy Roy where they recovered his birth certificate that said his name is ‘Parvez Raja’ and his birthplace is Karachi.

On June 5, 2017, the CBI indeed raided the Delhi and Dehradun homes of Prannoy Roy and his wife Radhika. These were carried out in connection with an alleged loss of Rs 48 crore they had caused to ICICI bank. NDTV had issued a statement claiming the CBI’s move was politically motivated and an attack on the freedom of the press. The CBI released its own statement soon after, claiming that the allegations being probed were not related to the delay in repayment of loans, but Rs 48 crore allegedly misappropriated by NDTV promoters (Prannoy Roy, Radhika Roy, M/s RRPR Holdings Pvt Ltd) and the loss incurred by ICICI Bank. The CBI had accused them of criminal conspiracy and collusion.

Neither the CBI’s press release nor any media reports suggest that Roy’s birth name is ‘Parvez Raja’ and he was born in Karachi.

Roy was, in fact, born in Kolkata, West Bengal.

2. Claim – The full form of NDTV is ‘Nawazuddin Tawfiq Venture’ after Prannoy Roy’s father.

This claim has no basis whatsoever. Founded in 1988, the full form of NDTV is New Delhi Television. Roy’s father is named Hurricane Roy.

3. Claim – Roy’s wife Radhika’s actual name is Rahila. Her grandfather was a cook in Babur’s army.

Radhika Roy, the co-founder of NDTV, was born on May 7, 1949, in Kolkata. Her maiden name was Radhika Das. Brinda Karat of the CPI(M) is her sister, and their father’s name is Suraj Lal Das.

The second claim about Radhika’s grandfather being a cook in Babur’s army is also completely false. Mughal emperor Babur was born in 1483 and died in 1530. How can Radhika, born almost 400 years later, be the granddaughter of his cook?

4. Claim – A dartboard with a picture of Narendra Modi was recovered from their bedroom.

No such dartboard was found during the searches. Moreover, the case was related to financial dealings where details of personal articles recovered from the individual are usually not made public.

The message was also investigated by The Lallantop in June 2017. The featured image used by the channel has now been shared with the fictitious story.

Where did this claim originate?

It was first posted by Twitter handle @RoflGandhi_ as a satirical message. On June 6, 2017, the users had shared a WhatsApp screenshot of the message which was picked up and widely circulated. The user confirmed that the message was originally shared on their account. We also did not find any post prior to June 6, 2017.

A satirical message on NDTV’s Prannoy and Radhika Roy has been shared on social media as true.

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