Pratik Sinha is a former Indian software engineer and journalist who co-founded the non-profit fact-checking website called Alt News along with Mohammed Zubair.
Pratik Sinha was born on 28 April, and he hails from Ahmedabad, Gujarat. His zodiac sign is Taurus.
A childhood picture of Pratik Sinha with his parents
He did his schooling at Prakash Higher Secondary School, Ahmedabad. Pratik Sinha’s mother is a Gujarati, hailing from Ahmedabad, meanwhile, his father is a Bengali. Therefore, Pratik spent his childhood oscillating between the cities, visiting Kolkata during his summer vacations. Raised by activist parents, Sinha developed social awareness at a very early age. In an interview, while talking about his childhood, he said,
I had a childhood where dinner-table conversations revolved around sociopolitical issues. So that was always at the back of my mind.”
From 1999 to 2003, he pursued a Bachelor in Engineering at the Bangalore Institute of Technology, affiliated to the Visvesvaraya Technological University, in Bengaluru, Karnataka. . After completing his formal education, Sinha moved to the US to pursue a career as a software engineer. Later, he shifted to Vietnam. In March 2013, he returned to Ahmedabad. A turning point in his life came in 2016 when the Jan Sangharsh Manch, the civil liberties organisation formed by his parents, joined hands with Una Dalit Atyachar Ladai Samiti for a march from Ahmedabad to Una. While documenting the march, Sinha recognised his inner desire to pursue a career in journalism. In an interview, while talking about the same, he said,
I documented the march on social media. That had a lot of impact and I thought, maybe, I should do something media-related. Moreover, I was not all that happy with my engineering career. I felt my work was only benefiting the economically privileged.”
Later, he started living in Kolkata, West Bengal.
Hair Colour: Black (Half Bald)
Eye Colour: Black
Pratik Sinha’s father, Mukul Sinha, was an Indian human rights activist and a lawyer at the Gujarat High Court in Ahmedabad, who died on 12 May 2014 due to lung cancer. Pratik’s mother, Nirjhari Sinha, worked as a scientist for 35 years. Together, Mukul and Nirjhari founded the Jan Sangharsh Manch, an independent civil rights organisation to address issues of labour and workers’ rights. The civil liberties organisation spearheaded the movement against the injustices suffered by victims of the 2002 riots and the families of encounter victims; Mukul Sinha legally represented those families. Nirjhari Sinha is also a director of the Pravda Media Foundation, a non-profit company under which Alt News functions. Pratik has no siblings.
Pratik Sinha’s parents
Pratik Sinha with his mother
Pratik Sinha is an atheist.
Pratik Sinha’s Facebook post depicting that he is an atheist
After completing his formal education, he started working at Day Begins Engineering Innovations Pvt Ltd. From 2003 to 2005, he worked at Ubiqtech Software Private Ltd, Bengaluru, as a Senior Software Engineer. At Ubiqtech, he worked in the areas of product design and development of a Firewall and VPN for the flagship product of the company. From 2004 to 2009, he was a member of the technical staff at Arada Systems, Bengaluru. Later, he joined Cloudleaf, Inc, as a Senior Software Engineer. He donned multiple hats at Arada Systems including the positions of Software Developer, Kernel Engineer, and Manager of the Enterprise Support Group. In 2009, he worked as a freelancer for the software development company Humbug in Vietnam. In May 2012, he joined the multinational software outsourcing organization InfoNam, Inc. as a Technical Co-ordinator in Vietnam. From August 2013 to February 2014, he held the position of Senior Embedded Software Engineer at ReadMe Systems Inc, Ahmedabad. On 9 February 2017, Pratik Sinha founded the Alt News website in Ahmedabad to combat the phenomenon of fake news along with Mohammed Zubair. For about a year, Zubair only aided Sinha in running the site meanwhile continuing to work for Nokia. Zubair finally quit his job at Nokia in September 2018 and joined Alt News as a full-time employee. In 2022, Sinha announced that would be setting up a branch in Kolkata, West Bengal.
Objectionable Tweet Against Lord Ganesha
In the aftermath of Mohammed Zubair‘s arrest on 27 June 2022, a Twitter user named Hanuman Bhakt @balajikijaiiin shared Pratik Sinha’s tweet posted in 2015 in which he had mocked Lord Ganesha and questioned whether a man with an elephant head existed. Hanuman Bhakt tagged Dehli Police in his post urging them to take action against Zubair.
Hanuman Bhakt’s response to Pratik Sinha’s 2015 tweet
Previously, Hanuman Bhakt had highlighted Zubair’s 2018 tweet which led to his arrest by the Delhi Police for allegedly hurting religious sentiments.
- His Twitter username is free_thinker.
- In the aftermath of his arrest in June 2022, various media houses reported that Zubair’s bank account had transactions over Rs 50 lakh in the previous days. Alt News co-founder Pratik Sinha denied the allegations against Zubair via a tweet citing that the police were linking donations received by Alt News to Zubair.
Fact-check: Absolutely lies. Police is linking donations received by Alt News to Zubair. All the money that Alt News receives goes to the organisations bank and not any individuals. The bank statement of Zubair’s personal account of which I have a copy debunks this falsehood. pic.twitter.com/esrmEVpTPp
— Pratik Sinha (@free_thinker) June 28, 2022
- Like his father, Pratik Sinha is also a vocal critic of erstwhile Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. After Sinha’s return to Ahmedabad from Vietnam in March 2013, his father was diagnosed with lung cancer in August 2013. He collaboratively established a Facebook page titled ‘Truth Of Gujarat’ along with his father in 2014. The political blog exposes the misgovernance of the Gujarat Government and its leaders. The About section of the page reads,
A campaign to stem the subversion of the rule of law, reach justice to the victim.”
The page was established after CBI came out with a charge sheet against several policemen from Gujarat who were found guilty of shooting four people in cold blood in a fake encounter under the instructions of the Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah as alleged by at least 3 police officers including GL Singhal.
- He was included in the Peace Research Institute Oslo’s nomination list for the 2022 Nobel Peace Prize along with his co-founder Mohammed Zubair.
- Apart from Hindi and English, Sinha can also speak Bengali, but he cannot read or write it.
- He is a non-vegetarian.
Pratik Sinha’s Facebook post depicting that he is a non-vegetarian
- He earned the OSM Inspiration of the Year Award at the Outlook Social Media Awards (2018).
Pratik Sinha receiving the OSM Inspiration of the Year Award at the Outlook Social Media Awards (2018)
- In 2019, he co-authored the book India Misinformed: The True Story, which aims to identify the prime movers of fabricated news, expose the propaganda machinery, and familiarise readers with techniques to detect fake news.
India Misinformed: The True Story