Modi 'biggest contender' for Peace Prize? Nobel committee member says ‘fake’
Deputy leader of the Norwegian Nobel Committee Asle Toje had lauded PM Modi for reminding Russian President Putin that "this is not the era of war."
Deputy leader of the Norwegian Nobel Committee Asle Toje on Thursday dismissed media reports claiming he said Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the “biggest contender” of the Nobel Peace Prize. Toje's clarification came after some TV channels and a now-viral tweet claimed that Toje, during this visit to India, had tipped PM Modi to be the “biggest contender” for the Nobel Peace Prize.
The viral tweet, dismissed by Toje as fake news, has received over 1.5 million impressions at the time of writing this.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Toje said he was in India not as a deputy leader of the esteemed committee, but as a director of International Peace and Understanding and as a friend of India Center Foundation (ICF). He stressed a "fake news tweet was sent out we should treat it as fake news."
"I am not in India as Deputy leader of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, I am here as a Director of International Peace and Understanding and as a friend of India Center Foundation," he said.
India Center Foundation (ICF) is a Delhi-based not-for-profit organisation.
“And I am here in India to talk about your politics and development. That said, I am the deputy leader of the Nobel committee. A fake news tweet was sent out and we should treat it as fake news. It's fake.”
“Let's not discuss it or give it energy or oxygen. I categorically deny that I said anything resembling what was in that tweet."
Toje, however, lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi for reminding Russian President Vladimir Putin that "this is not the era of war."
"Prime Minister Narendra Modi's statement that 'this is not the era of war' was an expression of hope. India has given signals that this is not how we should resolve world disputes today. PM Modi has the worth majority of the world's population behind him," ANI quoted him as saying.
ICF chairman Vibhav K. Upadhyay said that Indian news channels had misquoted Toje, reported ThePrint.
Upadhyay hoped it was picked by TV channels “by mistake or by extra enthusiasm”, adding that it is criminal if it was done “by design”.