Pawan Jaiswal was a freelance journalist who had exposed in 2019 that students in Mirzapur district in Uttar Pradesh ate 'Roti-salt' and 'Rice-salt' in their midday meals. Jaiswal was battling mouth cancer and had appealed for crowdfunding for his treatment.
Jaiswal succumbed to the disease on Thursday within a month of the appeal. Several people, including AAP MP Sanjay Singh, came forward to assist the journalist in his fight against cancer financially. His 'roti-salt' story triggered a political storm in the state as several politicians from the Opposition criticised the Yogi Adityanath government for the poor quality of food for children during midday meals.
Condolences For Jaiswal
Meanwhile, former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh and leader of the Opposition, Akhilesh Yadav, consoled Jaiswal's death and remembered him for exposing corruption by the BJP government in the state.
Swift Action Against The Teacher-In-Charge
Jaiswal had shot the video of Siur Primary School that showed children sitting in the school corridor and eating 'rotis' with salt under the Centre's flagship scheme. The district administration swiftly acted on the video and suspended the teacher-in-charge and the supervisor of the gram panchayat. However, they had also filed a case of defamation against Jaiswal.
In the police complaint, the Block Education Officer of the area had accused Mr Jaiswal and a representative of the local village head of a conspiracy to defame the Uttar Pradesh government, NDTV reported.
In reply to the case against him, Jaiswal put out another video mentioning how he had just reported facts. He also said that it was an attack on Journalism and welcomed everyone to verify the facts. Later, Jaiswal was given a clean chit by the state government.
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