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HomeFact CheckImages From Brazil Shared To Show Deforestation In Manipur Since Arrival Of...

Images From Brazil Shared To Show Deforestation In Manipur Since Arrival Of Kukis

Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

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 set of two images – one illustrating a lush green forest and another a barren land- claiming to  show massive deforestation in Manipur hills since the arrival of the Kuki community.

Such posts can be seen here, here and here.

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Fact

A Google lens search on the viral collage led us to a report by Daily Mail, dated June 3, 2019. Displaying both the images seen in the viral collage, the report elaborated on how a Brazilian couple afforested a land in Minas Gerais over a span of 20 years.

Deforestation In Manipur
Screengrab from Daily Mail website

Adding, “In 1998, the couple founded the Instituto Terra, an environmental organization dedicated to the sustainable development of the valley.  They elicited the support of Vale, one of the world’s biggest mining companies and reforestation experts, which donated 100,000 seedlings from its nursery and helped rejuvenate the ‘dead soil’.” 

In the report, the viral image of barren land was used to show the condition of the area in 2001, before the duo started replanting it. While the other image depicted the area after afforestation.

Screengrabs from Daily Mail website

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A keyword search for the words “Brazilian couple replant forest” on Google yielded multiple reports detailing how a Brazilian couple revived a barren land. One such report by The Sun stated that  the couple, Sebastião Ribeiro Salgado and Lélia, replanted the 1,754-acre plot of land around his family’s cattle ranch, only using seeds from the same region.

The article carried both the images to show the before and after images of an afforested land in Brazil.

Screengrab from The Sun website

A 2015 article by The Guardian quoted Salgado as saying, “The land was as sick as I was – everything was destroyed,” said Salgado. “Only about 0.5% of the land was covered in trees. Then my wife had a fabulous idea to replant this forest. And when we began to do that, then all the insects and birds and fish returned and, thanks to this increase of the trees I, too, was reborn – this was the most important moment.”

Black-and-white-versions of the viral images were also featured in the official website of  Instituto Terra.

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Hence, we could conclude that a set of images showing a before and after condition of an afforested land in Brazil has been falsely shared to show deforestation in Manipur since the arrival of the Kuki community.

Result: False

Sources
Report By Daily Mail, Dated June 3, 2019
Report By The Sun, Dated May 5, 2019
Instituto Terra Website


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Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

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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