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DNA’s syndicated content on GARV is erroneous and plagiarised

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I recently came across a post on DNA’s syndication feed by an author named Sachin Bhise. The topic of the post was “Is the data of rural India electrification on GARV correct”. Surprisingly I found that most of the content was plagiarised. This DNA post is dated 08/10/2016 but virtually the same text can be found in this piece by The Hindu way back in March 2016.

The issues with this DNA post are:

• The DNA article does not mention The Hindu as a source anywhere

• The author seems to have knowingly plagiarised from The Hindu piece because he has removed mentions of “The Hindu” from the original article. (Point number 9 and 10) – clear mala fide intention

• The author has plagiarised to the extent that even the order of paragraphs and data is the same. (Numbering can be matched to see the rampant copying)

Not only is it plagiarised but even the timing is suspect. Why write a post on the topic when the same exact post was written 7 months before? When the original The Hindu post had come, the Government had rebutted the claims made. This “new” DNA post ignores all such rebuttals. Coincidence or deliberate?

Is this a new modus-operandi chosen to defame a person? To cherry-pick data and articles without showing the corresponding rebuttals and fisking?

Rather than writing open letters, Mr Sachin Bhise should have read the response written by the Director of GOI (looking after Rural Electrification). The response too was published in The Hindu itself and that too within just 2 days of the original article. Selective copy-pasting from the author?

The question which comes up is why? What is the motive? Why would someone regurgitate a debunked post from over 6 months back, and post it again without providing the fact-checks? Why did he not want the readers to have a holistic view with both sides to the argument?

Further, how did this miss DNA’s scrutinising team? Do they openly give platform to plagiarised material? Do they have any active policy and mechanism to keep control over such instances of plagiarism? Is this the first instance of plagiarism or is there a can of worms waiting to be opened?

Surprisingly, DNA has disabled “copy” function from their website – presumably to deter online plagiarism. Perhaps they should focus on offline plagiarism too.

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