TV journo fired over 'inhuman' flood report

By Hayden Donnell

An Indian TV reporter has been fired for filing a report on monsoon floods while perched on the shoulders of a survivor.

News Express reporter Narayan Pargaien paid 50 rupees (NZ$1) for a man to hold him above the water as he filed a report on floods in the north Indian state Uttarakhand.

Footage of the report never aired but later went viral when it was posted on YouTube.

Pargaien initially told Indian media website newslaundry. com that the criticism he has faced over the video was unfair.

"People are talking about us being inhuman and wrong but we were actually helping some of the victims there," he said.

He blamed his cameraman for trying to ruin his career by ignoring instructions to only shoot him from the chest up.

The slight flood survivor had hoisted him on his shoulders as a sign of respect, he said.

"It was the first time someone of my level had visited his house. So while crossing the river he offered to help by carrying me ... between which, I thought of reporting"

News Express rejected those explanations in a statement posted online.

The channel had always been "with the people" and "for the people", it said.

"Such an act by the reporter Mr. Narayan Pargaien was not just inhuman but was also against the culture of our esteemed organisation."

Pargaien had been fired with immediate effect, the statement said.

"Such an act by the reporter is a Grave misconduct which goes against cultural values of our Channel.

About 70 per cent of India's population survives on less than US$2 a day.


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