When a three-member team from Doordarshan reached the Aranpur area of Chattisgarh for election coverage, little did they know that a group of Naxals lay in wait. The police personnel deployed for their safety fought gallantly as the team ran into an ambush in the jungles of Nilawaya, 30 kilometres from the district headquarters on October 30th but video journalist Achyutananda Sahu along with sub-inspector Rudra Pratap Singh and constable Mangal Ram were killed in the attack. The union government has now announced a compensation of 10 lakh for Sahu while the Press Information Bureau would pitch in with another 5 lakhs. This story, however, is about a video that's now being circulated on social media. It claims to be the last documented video of Sahu just before he succumbed to his injuries.
The man in the video shares how the attackers have surrounded the team from all sides and how there are fewer chances of survival. He sends a message to his mom saying that he loves her dearly and he may probably die in the attack. He further goes on to say that while he sees death, he isn’t scared. One can hear gunshots in the background with people. Now, these are days when likes on social media supersede the authenticity of the news in question. A freelance photojournalist, Ashish Ramesh, put up the video on his Facebook page wrongly attributing it to Sahu. There were some who also shared it on Sahu’s Facebook page. Friends and relatives were clearly miffed as the person in the video was not Sahu.
In.com can now reveal that the man in the video, while present at ground zero, is not Sahu and is very much alive. Achyutananda’s camera assistant Mormukt survived the attack but wasn’t so sure in the middle of the storm. He quickly recorded a personal message for his mother while they were being attacked. The video when made available was wrongly attributed to the deceased and has been since removed from most platforms.