Indian officer idolizes al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden as ‘the best junior engineer in the world’ and is suspended

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Believe it or not, Osama bin Laden is making headlines again. Well, he’s not alive, but his photo has caused a stir in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. In the incident, an official at a state-run electricity distribution company, who appears to have been impressed with the al-Qaeda founder, was suspended on Wednesday, media reported. The official had placed bin Laden‘s picture in his office and reportedly described him as “the best junior engineer in the world”, the officials said.

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The official, Ravindra Prakash Gautam, who works as a Sub-Divisional Officer (SDO) with the Dakshinanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd (DVVNL), had placed a note under the photo. The note read “Respected Osama Bin Laden, World’s Best Junior Engineer,” according to officials.

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When this photo with the message went viral on social media, senior district officials learned of the matter and suspended Gautam. The photo has also been removed from the desktop.

“The Chief Executive of DVVNL has suspended SDO Ravindra Prakash Gautam following an investigation into the incident,” Farrukhabad District Magistrate Sanjay Kumar Singh said. Gautam defended his act and told PTI, “Anyone can be an idol. Osama was the best junior engineer in the world. The photo has been removed, but I have several copies.”

(With agency contributions)

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