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HomeFact CheckAI-Generated Image Viral As Modified Tractors From Farmers’ Protest

AI-Generated Image Viral As Modified Tractors From Farmers’ Protest

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

A purported photograph by news agency ANI, stating that tractors taking part in the farmers’ protests have been modified to remove barricades, resist tear gas shells.

 The archived version of the tweet can be seen here.

Farmers Protest 2.0

Farmers, mainly from Punjab, accompanied by Haryana and Uttar Pradesh counterparts, with over 200 unions heading, began their ‘Chalo Delhi’ march on 10am Tuesday (February 13), demanding legal guarantees for the minimum support price, among other demands, after their meeting with the Union government remained inconclusive.

The Delhi Police have reportedly taken every possible step to stop the march from entering Delhi. There is heavy police presence at the Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur borders. The police have imposed a month-long ban on public meetings and tractors and trolleys entering the city, while authorities in Haryana and Delhi have reinforced borders with neighbouring states by installing concrete blocks, road spike barriers, and barbed wires.

Fact

Newschecker first ran a keyword search for “Modified tractors farmers march”, which led us to multiple news reports, seen here, here and here, stating that modified tractors would be used to remove the barricades and boulders placed by the police on highways in view of the farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ march scheduled on February 13.

“Tractors have been fitted with hydraulic tools to remove barricades, fire-resistant hard-shell trailers being readied to fight tear gas shells. They have also performed drills with these modified vehicles,” news agency ANI reportedly quoted a Central intelligence agency official as saying. None of the media outlets, including ANI, have shared the viral image in their reports, indicating that it was digitally created.

We then ran the image past Hive Moderator, an AI-generated content detection tool, which stated that there is only 99.99% chance of it being AI generated. A similar tool, Is it AI?, too, stated that the image is highly likely to be AI-generated.

We also came across this image in an article, dated February 11, 2024, by OpIndia, with the same headline in the viral post, where they clearly state that the image is AI-generated.

Also Read: Haldwani Violence: Video From 2023, Showing A Young Girl Pleading Not To Be Evicted, Shared As Recent

Result: Altered Media

Source
ANI report, February 13, 2024
Hive Moderator tool


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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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