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PM Modi’s old picture of a village visit falsely shared as meeting refugees

Since there are two claims in the aforementioned tweet, we decided fact checking them one by one.

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Claim:

National President of Bharatiya Janata Party Mahila Morcha and Chairperson of Maharashtra State Commission for Women Vijaya Rahatkar shared two pictures of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and claimed that the two pictures are 3 decades old. In one of the two pictures shared by her, first picture claims that PM Modi protested for the abrogation of Article 370 three decades ago and now he has fulfilled his own ideological commitment. In the second picture, she claims that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi also met Pakistani refugees three decades ago.

Verification:

Since there are two claims in the aforementioned tweet, we decided fact checking them one by one.

Fact-Check of the first claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar

As we began to fact check the claim, we first performed a reverse image search which led us to many articles published by several media outlets as BJP General Secretary Ram Madhav shared old picture of PM Modi in the wake of abrogation of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir.

The first report we found was published in Times Of India. The report informs about a tweet made by Ram Madhav post abrogation of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir.

‘Promise fulfilled’: Ram Madhav tweets PM Modi’s old photo of protest against Article 370 | India News – Times of India

India News: As Amit Shah announced in Rajya Sabha on Monday the Centre’s decision to repeal Article 370, BJP general secretary Ram Madhav too​k to Twitter to sugg

Furthermore, we also found a report published in NDTV which reports the same tweet as of Times of India.

Ram Madhav Tweets PM’s Old Photo, Says “Promise Fulfilled” On Article 370

Shortly after Home Minister Amit Shah announced the scrapping of the contentious Article 370 in parliament today, BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav made a dramatic statement on Twitter, posting an old photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at an Article 370 event with the message: “Promise fulfilled”.

We also found a report published in Times Now which further backs the claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar.

Hence we reached the conclusion that the first claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar is true.

Fact-Checking the second claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar

The second claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar in her tweet is already debunked by us. The said picture in which PM Modi can be seen meeting some people is not the one in which PM Modi met Pakistani refugees. The picture was captured in early 80s when PM Modi was asked to visit villages in Gujarat as an RSS worker. We found the same picture on PM Modi’s personal website. The picture is posted with a description which is as follows, “His travels across Gujarat continued and increased through the early 1980s. This gave him the opportunity to visit every Taluka and almost every village in the state. This experience came very handy for him both as an organiser and as the Chief Minister. It gave him a first hand view of the problems people face and increased his resolve to work harder to solve them. When droughts, floods or riots struck he would lead the relief efforts too.”

Narendra Modi was happily immersed in his work but the elders in the RSS and the newly formed BJP felt otherwise, they wanted him to take on more responsibility and in 1987 another chapter began in Narendra Modi’s life. From then on, he was as much on the streets as he would be formulating party strategies. He would have to work with Party leaders and sit with Karyakartas.

The boy from Vadnagar who left his home to serve the nation was about to take another giant step, but for him it was merely a continuation of his journey to bring smiles on the faces of his countrymen and women. After a Yatra to Kailash Mansarovar, Narendra Modi got down to work as the General Secretary in the Gujarat BJP.”

Now, nowhere in the description it is mentioned that PM Modi was meeting refugees. In fact, the description describes in detail the context of the aforesaid picture.

The claim is previously debunked by us, our Hindi fact check of the same claim can be viewed below.

नरेंद्र मोदी की वर्षों पुरानी एक तस्वीर को भ्रामक कैप्शन देकर किया गया शेयर

सोशल मीडिया पर नरेंद्र मोदी की एक पुरानी तस्वीर वायरल हो रही है। तस्वीर में नरेंद्र मोदी कुछ गरीब बुजुर्गों से मिलते नजर आ रहे हैं। दावा है कि तस्वीर में दिख रहे लोग पाकिस्तानी हिन्दू शरणार्थी हैं जिनसे मिलने के लिए नरेंद्र मोदी गए थे। तस्वीर के साथ वायरल हो रहे दावे की जाँच के लिए हमने पड़ताल आरम्भ की। – नरेंद्र मोदी की वर्षों पुरानी एक तस्वीर को भ्रामक कैप्शन देकर किया गया शेयर

Hence, we reached the conclusion that the second claim made by Vijaya Rahatkar is ‘Misleading’.

Result: First Claim is true.

Second claim is ‘Misleading’.

Sources

Google Search

Reverse Image Search

Narendra Modi’s Personal Website

Media Reports

(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

 

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English

Did Qatar cancel all Air India flights under Vande Bharat Mission? No, it’s a false claim

An image which states that Qatar cancelled all Air India flights under Vande Bharat Mission is false.

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Claim

An image we received on our Whatsapp verification number claims “Qatar cancelled all Air India Flights Under Vande Bharat Mission.” See the image below. 

Factcheck

The above image also claims that earlier Air India got exemptions from their airport charges on account of Vande Bharat being an evacuation mission. Later, on realising that passengers paid 700 riyals for these tickets, they cancelled all the flights. 

We found similar messages being circulated on Facebook and Twitter, examples below. 

What an image we build !!

Người đăng: Shrikant Prabhu vào Thứ Sáu, 15 tháng 5, 2020

You can view another example here

Through a keyword search we came across a clarification on the official Twitter page of the Embassy of India Doha, Qatar. It denied the rumour by stating that a flight was cancelled due to technical reasons. And is being rescheduled for 12 May. 

A subsequent tweet on 11 May by the Embassy of India, Doha expressed that a few media channels were making a baseless claim about flight IX-374 from Doha to Thiruvananthapuram was cancelled because of differences over landing and handling charges. None of it is true. 

Conclusion

We found the claim in the image which states that Qatar cancelled all Air India flights under Vande Bharat Mission to be false. 

Tools Used

  • Google search
  • Twitter advanced search 

Result: False 

(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

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Coronavirus

Photograph Taken in 1985 Shared on Social Media in the Backdrop of COVID-19 Pandemic

A photograph is being widely shared on social media, which shows a woman holding a child in her hands, claiming that this picture was taken before the mother succumbed to the novel coronavirus in Italy.

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A Facebook user shared a photograph of a woman holding a child her in her hands claiming that this picture was taken before the mother succumbed to the novel coronavirus in Italy.

बेटे से माँ की जुदाई…है भगवान हर माँ की रक्षा करों !इटली की महिला कोरोना की तीसरी और आखरी स्टेज में थी सामने उनका 18…

Người đăng: Subham Chouhan Lalla Bhaiya vào Thứ Ba, 21 tháng 4, 2020

The caption of the viral image, when translated to English, reads, ‘Such a disheartening incident. Female Corona patient in Italy was in the third stage and her 18-month-old child was crying a lot. The patient expressed her last wish that she wanted to hug her child once. The doctors covered her entire body, and as she holds the child, the child stopped crying, but the mother succumbed to the coronavirus.’

We found that the photograph was being shared on Facebook and Twitter with identical claims.

Several readers sent the viral pictures to Newschecker’s WhatsApp helpline number for verification.

Fact Check

With the help of reverse image search, we found the same image in Magnum Photos. The image viral on social media was clicked in 1985 at a cancer treatment centre in Seattle, USA by photojournalist Burt Glinn, before the baby’s bone marrow transplant and has no connection with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The caption of the image reads, “USA, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, 1985. Fred Hutchinson CancerCenter- Infant inside Laminar AirFlow Room protection from infection. The child has been irradiated prior to marrow transplant.”

We also found that the original photograph clicked by Burt Glinn is vertical, and one can see the mother in a standing position with her hands and face inserted into the laminar airflow box, whereas the image viral on social media is in a horizontal position. You can see the comparison here:

Conclusion

It is clear from our fact check that the photograph viral on social media, which shows a woman holding a child in her hands, is neither from Italy nor does it has any connection with coronavirus pandemic. The image was taken in 1985 at a cancer treatment center in Seattle, USA, by photojournalist Burt Glinn before the baby’s bone marrow transplant.

Sources

  • Google Reverse Image Search
  • Google Search

Result: Misleading

(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

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Coronavirus

COVID-19 Patients Are Not Being Segregated On The Basis Of Religion; Media Outlets Falsely Report

Since the government has denied the allegations of segregation of COVID-19 patients on the basis of religion and the doctor whom the outlets claim to have spoken, alleges

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News outlets such as The Hindu, The New Indian Express, and others claimed that the COVID-19 patients in Gujarat are being segregated on the basis of religion at Ahmedabad Civil Hospital. The reports published by media outlets were further amplified by several verified and prominent Twitter handles.

Fact Check

As it is rightly said, the world is fighting a pandemic and an ‘Infodemic’, Indian media is justifying the statement in its truest sense. In the past few days, cases of misreporting by media outlets have seen a spike, besides a strict warning by the Supreme Court. Indian media was recently criticized for the religious profiling of COVID-19 cases in India but even that could not stop the media from reporting COVID-19 cases on the basis of the religion. 

The latest outlet to join the communal cacophony of Indian media is ‘The Hindu’ which is otherwise known for its quality journalism. The paper tried to undo the damage though by removing the ‘Hindu/Muslim’ words from its report after realizing they had misreported on the matter. 

The Hindu on 15th April carried a report titled ‘COVID-19 patients segregated on the basis of religion at Ahmedabad Civil Hospital, according to reports’. The report carried by ‘The Hindu’ is based on the alleged segregation of COVID-19 patients at Ahmedabad Civil Hospital. The report was later updated and certain changes were made to the report. 

Here’s what was in the initial report and what all changes were made to the report.

Note: ‘Red’ color stands for words removed in the updated report and ‘Green’ color for words added.

An archived version of the first updates report can be found here.

An archived version of the updated report can be found here.

Interestingly, the aforementioned ‘The Hindu’ report was updated within a few minutes after publishing. The original version of the above-mentioned report is not available on the web and it is nowhere specified in the report what was updated and when.

Another news outlet The Indian Express, which has a history of publishing reports through unverified sources, made the same claim as that by ‘The Hindu’.

An archived version of the first updated version of The Indian Express report can be found here.

The latest version of The Indian Express report can be found here.

The Indian Express in its report claims to have spoken to the Medical Superintendent of Ahmedabad Civil Hospital namely ‘Dr. Gunvant H Rathod’. The report further claims that Dr. Rathod told the publication, “Generally, there are separate wards for male and female patients. But here, we have made separate wards for Hindu and Muslim patients. (On being asked about the reason Dr. Rathod said) It is a decision of the government and you can ask them.”

The aforementioned report further claims that there are almost 150 COVID patients in the hospital, out of which, at least 40 belong to the Muslim community.

The report published by The Indian Express was further amplified by many prominent journalists and politicians such as Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi, TMC MP Mohua Mitra, India Today Journalist Rajdeep Sardesai and his journalist wife Sagarika Ghosh, Rana Ayyub, Kavita Krishnan, Prashant Bhushan, Sanjay Singh, Saba Naqvi, Swati Chaturvedi, Shama Mohamed, Alfons Lopez Tena, moneycontrol, Smitha Nair, Nirjhari Sinha, National Herald, Mitali Saran, Ali, Real Report, Ashok Swain, Man Aman Singh Chhina, Tarek Fatah, Jignesh Mevani, Ajit Anjum, Isaac Chotiner, Swaraj India, Khaled Beydoun, Lt Gen H S Panag (Retired), Seema Chishti, Rakesh Sharma, GK Zhimomi, Muzamil Jaleel, Kawalpreet Kaur, Karuna Nundy, Pooja Pillai, Snehesh Alex Philip, Avinash Dutt, Spandan Srivastava, Vimlendu Jha, Saif Ullah Khan, Omar R Quraishi, Niraj Bhatia, Bumbai Ki Rani, Paranjoy Guha Thakurata, Nishita Jha, Zafar Sareshwala, Suresh Mathew, Parmesh Shahani, Faraz Arif Ansari, Dushyant, Liz Mathew, Aamer Javeed and Debasish Roy.

We searched the social media accounts of the concerned hospital and we found the statement of the doctor, The Indian Express claims to have spoken to, has alleged that the outlet has misquoted him.

The statement of the doctor can be viewed below.

When we searched further, we found a tweet by the official Twitter handle of The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom where the body has condemned the segregation of the patients on the basis of religion.

Replying to the aforementioned tweet, Anurag Srivastava who is the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, India, has suggested that the USCIRF  ‘stop adding religious color to India’s national goal of fighting the COVID 19 pandemic.’

Additionally, we found a tweet made by the Gujarat arm of Press Information Bureau which has denied the allegations levied against the concerned hospital.

Similarly, in a tweet, the Department of Information in Gujarat,, rubbished the claims of segregation of COVID-19 patients on the basis of religion. 

The Health & Family Welfare Department of the Gujarat Government has also clarified the issue in a Twitter thread.

Since the government has denied the allegations of segregation of COVID-19 patients on the basis of religion and the doctor whom the outlets claim to have spoken, alleges to be misquoted, here’s a list of questions that make the report carried by the two news outlets look suspicious.

  1. If Dr. Rathod said that the segregation is taking place on the orders issued by the government, did the outlets try to ask for a copy of the order? If yes, did they get the same? If yes, why was the copy of the order not mentioned in the report?
  2. The Indian Express claims to have spoken to Dr. Rathod and some of the patients as well, is there a video/audio proof for the same? If yes, why is the same not mentioned in any of the updated versions of the report? Since the Government has denied the acknowledgment of any segregation on the basis of religion, the best practice would be to produce the proofs of the conversations which according to the outlet took place inside the hospital.
  3. The Indian Express claims to have spoken to the district magistrate of Ahmedabad and the Deputy Chief Minister of Gujarat and both have categorically denied the acknowledgment of any such segregation. Now, since the outlet has not been able to produce a copy of the order, how did the outlet reach the conclusion that segregation has taken place based on an order issued by the government?
  4. In the report published by ‘The Hindu’, the outlet has mentioned that the said information was provided by a special correspondent, why did the outlet not ask for the proof of testimony of the patients or the statement made by the ‘anonymous doctor’ it has mentioned in the report?

Basis the statement of Dr. Rathod of Ahmedabad Civil Hospital and a clear denial of several government bodies, we reached the conclusion that the two outlets mentioned above, published a ‘False’ report which was later amplified by several verified Twitter handles. Also it is noteworthy that despite being called out by the government, both ‘The Hindu’ and ‘The Indian Express’, in spite of adding proofs to their respective reports, have merely updated the reports by adding the government’s denial. 

Sources

  • Google Search
  • Twitter Advanced Search

Result: False

(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

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