Last evening at a press meet, Shinde had threatened to "crush" the "elements in the electronic media spreading false propaganda."
On Monday in his home constituency Solapur, Shinde said, "Certain elements in the media orchestrate 'nasty designs'. Since I'm also in charge of the intelligence wing, I know where this is coming from. We have been working silently to place checks on them, but there was a campaign from them over the past four months. We are now going to crush these elements in the electronic media spreading false propaganda."
Reportedly, Shinde's remarks came after a series of opinion polls in media predicted a poor showing for the Congress in the Lok Sabha elections, due by May.
On Tuesday morning, Shinde clarified, "I spoke about social media spreading hatred, not journalism."
Recently, the Editors Guild, objecting to statements made by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal and former Army Chief VK Singh, had released a statement criticising attacks on the media by political leaders.
Political leaders should not resort to "vague, unsubstantiated charges of corrupt motives and abuses when refuting, questioning or criticising the media and keep the public discourse civil and within reasonable bounds", it had said.
"It is 'distressing' to find a person like General VK Singh using the term 'presstitutes' to describe journalists who wrote a story on the movement of army units causing concern to the government. The remarks are "unbecoming of a former chief of the Indian Army," a statement issued by the guild said.
"It is equally disquieting to find Arvind Kejriwal attributing corrupt motives to the media that were critical of him and charging media with being pressured into ignoring him without coming up with specific details or material to substantiate such charges," the Editors Guild said.