A set of four images are being widely shared on social media, with users claiming that the images showed the recent demolition drive in UP’s Unnao and under the BJP rule. Newschecker found the images to be old and unrelated to the recent anti-encroachment drive under the Yogi government.
Former union minister and senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid was among several social media users who shared the collage of four images claiming to show the condition in ‘Buldozerland.’
Khurshid tweeted four images with the caption, “Not Ukraine, these are photos of Unnao and Farrukhabad of Buldozerland,” on June 7, 2022. His post has been retweeted over 4,700 times and liked by more than 14K users so far. An archived version of the same can be found here.
Several other Twitter and Facebook users also shared the same images claiming to show enrichment drive in UP under the BJP rule.
We came across a tweet by the Senior Adviser, Union Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Kanchan Gupta quoting Khurshid’s tweet and stating “2016 photos when Akhilesh Yadav was CM of Uttar Pradesh are being used in 2022.” Gupta also shared screengrab from Amar Ujala reports.
Taking a clue, we conducted relevant keyword searches in Hindi and set the time period for search results from May 1, 2016 to May 31, 2016 and found reports published in Amar Ujala carrying similar images. You can check them here and here.
Following this, Newschecker began to investigate the images one by one.
On comparing the viral image with the one featured in Amar Ujala report dated May 27, 2016 we found several similarities.
As per the report, a drive was undertaken to demolish illegal construction at Chhota Chauraha and Ataullah Nala road area in Unnao. Notably, the Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party was in power in Uttar Pradesh in 2016.
On further search, we found a set of four pictures posted by Facebook user @shubham.nigam.583 on May 26, 2016 with the caption in Hindi which roughly translates to “The scene of destruction. Unnao map has been changed. Unnao’s small intersection destroyed.”
The post also carried the viral image shared by users with the claim to recent Bulldozer drive in Unnao.
We compared the viral image with the one published in the 2016 Amar Ujala report and found several similarities like the building and positioning of the electric pole.
We found that the viral image was also posted by Facebook user @shubham.nigam.583 on May 26, 2016.
Another Amar Ujala report on the same incident, dated May 28, 2016, carried an image with the caption which roughly translates to “Encroachment Drive.” On Comparing the image with the viral one, we found some similarities between them like the building and the presence of a tree behind the pink building.
Facebook user @shubham.nigam.583 had also posted this image on May 26, 2016.
We conducted multiple keyword and reverse image searches on Google and Yandex, but could not find information about the image.
Following which, Newschecker Hindi team contacted Unnao-based Amar Ujala Reporter Anurag Mishra. Anurag further confirmed to us that the images were from 2015-16 when a demolition drive was undertaken between Ataullah Nala and Chhota Chauraha area in the city.
However, we were not able to independently verify the same.
Three out of the four images claiming to show anti-encroachment drive in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao under Yogi government are actually from 2016 when the Akhilesh Yadav-led SP was in power in the state. However, we were not able to find verify the authenticity of the fourth imaged shared by Khurshid.
Result: Missing Context/False Context
(With inputs from Shubham Singh Of Newschecker Hindi Team.)
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