Tamil Nadu Government Recognizes Zubair’s Efforts in Combating Fake News and Promoting Harmony
Mohammed Zubair, co-founder of Alt News, has been bestowed with the prestigious Kottai Ameer Communal Harmony Award by the Tamil Nadu government for the year 2024 for ‘his dedication to fostering communal harmony through accurate reporting’.
The award comes in recognition of Zubair’s instrumental role in debunking misinformation surrounding a viral video falsely claiming attacks on migrant workers in Tamil Nadu.
The Chief Minister presented Zubair with the award during the Republic Day celebration on January 26, 2024. The honour includes a cash prize of Rs 25,000, a medal, and a certificate.
The press release highlighted Zubair’s pivotal role in preventing potential violence fueled by fake news. In March 2023, rumours circulated on social media alleging attacks on migrant workers in Tamil Nadu. Zubair’s fact-checking on Alt News revealed that the video in question was not from Tamil Nadu, effectively quelling the spread of unfounded claims against the state and averting potential violence based on caste, religion, race, and language.
“Thus, he stopped the spread of rumours against Tamil Nadu and acted to prevent violence caused by caste, religion, race, and language,” the state, government said in the citation.
“In appreciation of the services rendered by him in maintenance of communal harmony, Thiru Mohammed Zubair is presented with the Kottai Ameer Communal Harmony Award for the year 2024.”
The Kottai Ameer Communal Harmony Award is an annual recognition presented to individuals from Tamil Nadu who have made outstanding contributions to promoting communal harmony.
Zubair, who hails from Krishnagiri district in Tamil Nadu, has faced challenges in his pursuit of truth. The release mentioned that he has been a target of political backlash, notably from the BJP.
Despite facing arrests and cases, Zubair has remained steadfast in his ‘commitment to upholding journalistic integrity’.