“Perverted, grotesque”: An illustration in a TOI edit page piece that got the Russian ambassador’s humourless goat

An edit page piece in The Times of India by the paper’s edit page editor Swagato Ganguly has got the Russians—or at least their representative in India—all riled up.

The piece, “Does soft power matter?“, built on the YouTube video released by Vladimir Putin‘s bugbear Alexei Navalny, has led to a loud protest by Russia’s ambassador to India, so much so that TOI carries his complaint as a special Letter to the Editor on a Saturday.

In particular, the envoy takes exception to the illustration accompanying the article, calling “grotesque, perverted”.

Thankfully, The Times responds in a manner unthinkable in Moscow:

“We apologise for any hurt caused by the illustration; there was no intention to disrespect the national symbols of Russia.

“As for the article, we publish a wide range of independent views”

– Editor

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