No, Sushant Singh Rajput’s ex-manager Disha Salian is not in this photo with Sooraj Pancholi

The foul media coverage and social media obsession with actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death give birth to new conspiracy theories every passing day. The latest addition to this hubbub is the claim that Rajput’s manager Disha Salian was photographed with actor Sooraj Pancholi.

Disha Salian had passed away days before Rajput’s death on June 14. Social media grapevine linked Salian’s death with Pancholi who has been surrounded by controversies ever since his girlfriend and actor Jiah Khan died by suicide in 2013.

On August 5, Twitter account @KanganaOffical, a parody account with 25,000 followers, had posted an image claiming that Pancholi lied about never meeting Salian. Its tweet said, “Pancholi said he doesn’t knew [know] Disha. He Never Met Her In His Entire Life. #SCForSushant”. This has been retweeted over 1000 times (archived link). Other Twitter users also posted the image with an identical claim. 

Screenshot of this tweet and similar posts were spotted on Facebook.

Fact-check

In the wee hours of August 5, Pancholi made a post on Instagram refuting social media claims. He wrote, “That girl in the picture which was clicked in 2016 is not “Disha Salian” that is my friend @agaur21 (Anushri Gaur) who doesn’t even live in India… I have said this before and I’m saying it again I have never met or spoken to Disha Salian in my life”. Pancholi is the man wearing a cap and the woman next to him is Gaur. 

Gaur also replied to this post, thanking Pancholi for “posting the truth.” Alt News reached out to Gaur via Instagram and she confirmed that the one next to Pancholi is her. She added that the other woman in the photo is Athiya Shetty, daughter of actor Sunil Shetty. “The photograph was taken at Athiya’s birthday party in 2016,” she said. 

A fan account dedicated to Sooraj Pancholi had tweeted a picture of him with Gaur. Evidently, the woman in the viral image and the one in this photo are the same.

It is noteworthy that Gaur had blamed the media for misreporting that the woman in the picture is Disha Salian. He shared a screenshot of a Mirror Now broadcast where the picture was aired. However, Mirror Now did not claim that Pancholi was photographed with Salian. On August 5, during its daily show ‘The Urban Debate’, the channel said that the picture is being shared with the claim that the woman is Salian, which was denied by Sooraj Pancholi’s father Aditya Pancholi. Mirror Now then played Aditya Pancholi’s clarification. 

Thus a picture of Sooraj Pancholi with a friend was shared with the false claim that he was photographed with Sushant Singh Rajput’s former manager Disha Salian.

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