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HomeElection WatchViral Whatsapp Message On ‘Pro-Muslim’ Congress Manifesto Has Multiple False Claims, Is...

Viral Whatsapp Message On ‘Pro-Muslim’ Congress Manifesto Has Multiple False Claims, Is Misleading

Authors

Kushel HM is a mechanical engineer-turned-journalist, who loves all things football, tennis and films. He was with the news desk at the Hindustan Times, Mumbai, before joining Newschecker.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

Claim
Congress manifesto for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections blatantly panders to the Muslim community.

Fact
Multiple claims found to be false and highly misleading.

A viral Whatsapp forward purportedly highlights several points from the recently released Congress manifesto for the upcoming 2024 Lok Sabha elections, stating that the “dangerous manifesto” reads like a “vision 2047” document for the Popular Front of India (PFI) – a controversial Islamic political organisation that was banned for five years by the Central government in 2022 for its alleged links with global terror groups and terror funding.

Here’s how the Whatsapp forward reads:

Congress Manifesto is horrible. Never seen such a dangerous manifesto in my life. It’s like vision 2047 document of PFI

Check these points of manifesto

1. Will bring back triple talak (Muslim personal law)

2. Reservation to Muslim in govt n private jobs (Implement Sachchar committee report)

3. Support Love Jihad (right to love)

4. Support Burqa in school (right to dress)

5. End majoritarianism (Hinduism)

6. Ban bulldozer action

7. Support Gaza (Hamas)

8. Legalise Same Sex Marriage, gender fluidity, trans movement

9. Increase Muslim judges in judiciary

10. Communal violence bill (will stop mob lynching)

11. Legalise beef (right to eat everything)

12. Separate loan interest for Muslims

13. Allow treason (No sedition)

All those Hindu who are thinking to vote Indi Alliance, NOTA or independent. Read this and think.

We received this message on our Whatsapp tipline (9999499044), too, requesting us to fact-check it. An archived version of the tweet can be seen here.

Fact Check

The Congress had on April 5, 2024, announced its manifesto, “Nyay Patra”. Focussing on the five ‘pillars of justice’, the 48-page Congress manifesto reportedly guarantees a 10% quota in jobs for EWS, a nationwide socio-economic and caste census and raising the 50% cap on reservations for SC, ST and OBC.

Provisions For Minorities, Not Just Muslims

We looked up the manifesto for the words “triple talaq”, “Muslim personal law”, which did not throw up any direct reference, but led us to a couple of points seen on page 8 (image below), under the “religious and linguistic minorities” subsection in the manifesto, where the party pledges to uphold and protect the rights granted to the minorities under the Constitution of India. There is no mention of bringing back the practice of triple talaq, which was outlawed in 2019.

Under its section titled “Equity”, the Congress guarantees that it will pass a constitutional amendment to raise the 50 per cent cap on reservations for SC, ST and OBC, along with the reservation of 10 per cent in jobs and educational institutions for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS). There is no mention of any specific allocation for the Muslim community (as claimed in the second point of the viral forward) in government and private jobs, however, the party states that it will enact a law with reference to Article 15(5) of the Constitution to provide for reservation in private educational institutions for SC, ST and OBC.

Similarly, the manifesto promised to bring in more HC and SC judges from the SC, ST, OBC, religious minority communities, as well as more women judges at these positions, but it does not single out the Muslim community for such a provision. The manifesto also did not state a lower interest rate on loans for Muslims.

Freedom Of Choice Of Dress, Food And Speech

Newschecker then looked up references to “Love Jihad”, “burqa” and “beef” (seen in the third, fourth and 11th points of the viral forward), which, again, did not throw up any specific references to these terms, but just the promise listed out under the “Equity” section, stating that the Congress will ensure that, like every citizen, minorities have the freedom of choice of dress, food, language and personal laws.

Also, on page 21 of the manifesto, under the section titled “Defending the Constitution”, the Congress promises not to interfere with personal choices of food and dress, to love and marry, and to travel and reside in any part of India. “All laws and rules that interfere unreasonably with personal freedoms will be repealed,” reads the manifesto.

There is no mention of the Congress allowing for treason or sedition. Under the same section (Defending the Constitution), the party promises to restore freedom of speech and expression including full freedom of the media, while also promising to decriminalise the offence of defamation and provide, by law, a speedy remedy by way of civil damages.

The manifesto does make two references to the word “majoritarianism”, stating, “Given the history and the democratic traditions of India, the Congress believes that there is no place for authoritarianism or majoritarianism.”

No Support To Hamas

Under the section titled “Foreign Policy” (page 40), the manifesto states, “There has been a consensus on foreign policy since Independence. Unfortunately, in many areas, foreign policy under the BJP/NDA government has witnessed marked departures from this consensus, notably on the ongoing Gaza conflict. Congress pledges to restore India’s global reputation as a voice of peace and moderation in world affairs”, indicating a probable change in stance. However, there is no mention of Hamas in the document, which contradicts the claim that the party will support the Palestinian militant organisation.

Opposing Bulldozer Justice, Mob Lynching

Meanwhile, the manifesto clearly states that it promises to “put an end to the weaponisation of laws, arbitrary searches, seizures and attachments, arbitrary and indiscriminate arrests, third-degree methods, prolonged custody, custodial deaths, and bulldozer justice,” while also firmly opposing “extra-judicial illegal measures like mob lynching, police encounter killings…We will stop them immediately and punish the perpetrators in accordance with law”. There is no mention of the party pushing for a communal violence bill as stated in the claim.

Stance On LGBTQIA+

Regarding the claim that the manifesto vowed to legalise same-sex marriage, gender fluidity, trans movement, the Congress said it promises to bring a law to recognize civil unions between couples belonging to the LGBTQIA+ community, while also stating, “We will expand Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution to prohibit discrimination on the ground of ‘disability’, ‘impairment’ or ‘sexual orientation’.”  However, there is no mention of promoting gender fluidity or the “trans movement”.

Also Read: Condition Of Wayanad? Here’s The Truth Behind Viral Video Claiming To Be From Rahul Gandhi’s Constituency

Conclusion

Viral Whatsapp message claiming that the Congress’s manifesto for the general elections majorly caters towards the interests of Muslims was found to be extremely misleading.

Result: Partly False

Source
Congress Manifesto Nyay Patra


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Authors

Kushel HM is a mechanical engineer-turned-journalist, who loves all things football, tennis and films. He was with the news desk at the Hindustan Times, Mumbai, before joining Newschecker.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

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