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HomeFact Check2018 Times Now Report On Congress Manifesto For Telangana Elections Falsely Linked...

2018 Times Now Report On Congress Manifesto For Telangana Elections Falsely Linked To Karnataka Polls

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.

Claim
Ahead of Karnataka Assembly elections, Congress releases its manifesto that promises seven “Muslim-only” schemes.

Fact
The Times Now report is from 2018, ahead of the Telangana Assembly elections

Several social media users are circulating an excerpt of a Times Now debate, where the anchor is seen discussing the “Congress party’s manifesto” that heavily favours Muslims. According to a user, the Congress, ahead of the May 10 Karnataka Assembly elections, pledged “all govt contracts to Muslim youths; ₹20L financial aid to poor Muslim students; residential schools for Muslims only; hospitals for minorities only; and free electricity supply to mosques and churches.” 

We also received this claim on our Whatsapp tipline (9999499044), too, requesting it to be fact-checked.

The archived versions of the tweets can be seen here and here.

Also Read: Karnataka Polls: Did Prakash Raj Urge Voters To Not Waste Their Vote On Congress?

Fact check

Newschecker noticed that at the 00:44 mark of the 02:20 clip, the Times Now anchor, Rahul Shivshankar, while outlining the promises in the “manifesto”, states that the document is in Telugu script.

Taking a cue from this, we ran a relevant keyword search, which led us to this corresponding Times Now report, dated December 1, 2018, headlined, “Telangana election: SHOCKING Congress manifesto vows ‘Muslim-only schools, govt contracts’”.

“In its draft manifesto ahead of the Telangana election, the Congress has made a brazen attempt at pitting Muslims against Hindus. The draft has been accessed by Times Now. It shows that the Congress has promised seven ‘Muslim-only’ schemes in its manifesto to woo the community’s voters ahead of Telangana Assembly Elections 2018,” read the report. Times Now’s tweet, dated November 26, 2018, on the report can be seen here.

We then ran a keyword search for “Karnataka Congress manifesto”, which led us to multiple reports on the release of the vision document, titled “Sarva Janangada Shanthiya Thota’ which translates to “Peaceful garden of all communities”. The reports can be seen here, here and here.

(Screenshot of ET article on Congress manifesto.)

According to the Indian Express, “The Congress party has vowed to extend the ceiling of reservation for SC, ST, OBCs and minority communities such as Lingayats and Vokkaligas from 50% to 75%; eradicate corruption in public works; and take strong legal action against groups spreading hatred on grounds of religion or caste,” contradicting the “Muslim-appeasement claims” made in the viral posts.

“Congress in its manifesto announced that if it forms a government in Karnataka this year, it will provide 200 units of free electricity. It will also hand ₹2,000 every month to each and every woman head of the family, ₹3,000 per month for two years to unemployed graduates and ₹1,500 per month to unemployed diploma holders,” stated a Mint report.

Interestingly, Times Now and Republic TV were called out in 2018 for misreporting the Congress manifesto and building a false narrative that the party promised benefits exclusively for Muslims and other minority sections in Telangana. According to a Newslaundry report, dated November 28, 2018, which debunked the claims in the Times Now and Republic TV reports, both channels cherry-picked a handful of schemes that benefit Muslims, while ignoring the rest of the manifesto which has schemes, equivalent or otherwise, to appease other communities.

Conclusion

2018 Times Now report stating that the Congress has released a manifesto heavily favouring Muslims ahead of the Telangana Assembly elections has been falsely linked to the 2023 Karnataka Assembly elections.

Result: False

Sources
Times Now report, December 1, 2018
Times Now tweet, November 26, 2018
NewsLaundry, November 28, 2018


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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.

Kushel HM
Kushel HM
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.

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