Poll-bound UP and Bihar have emerged as the centre of recent protests over RRB NTPC exam with the police cracking down on a group of protestors who allegedly tried to stop a train in Prayagraj on Tuesday. In Bihar, the protest turned violent after a group of protestors torched four empty coaches of a train in Gaya and blocked rail traffic between Gaya and Jehanabad on Wednesday. In this backdrop, several social media users are sharing old images claiming to show the recent police clampdown on students protesting against irregularities in the RRB-NTPC exam, 2021.
What Is The Protest About?
Aspirants of the Railway Recruitment Board 2021 exam are protesting against the Railway’s decision to conduct the recruitment test in two stages, alleging that the second stage was unfair to those who have cleared the first stage, results of which were released on January 15. Protesters claim that the notification issued in 2019 mentioned only one examination and accuse the government of “toying with their future”. Around 1.25 crore aspirants had applied for the examination for recruitment for over 35,000 posts.
Following the protest, the Railways decided to suspend the test and form a high-level committee to examine the grievances of aspirants, both who passed and failed the exams under different railway recruitment boards. Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw has urged the students to not take law in their hands and assured them that their grievances would be seriously addressed.
On January 25, the police in UP’s Prayagraj cracked down on a group of protesters who allegedly tried to stop a train Soon after the incident, videos of policemen purportedly barging into hostel rooms of students and flogging them went viral on social media, with the Congress as well as the Samajwadi Party condemning the the incident.
Newschecker conducted a Google reverse image search for one of the images that is being circulated in context of the ongoing protests over RRB NTPC exam. We found that the viral image was from a protest that took place in UP’s Lucknow in 2018 over recruitment to the post of assistant teachers in government schools.
On subjecting the other viral images to a similar procedure, Newschecker found that three out of four viral images that are being circulated claiming to show the protests over RRB NTPC exam were from the same incident in 2018, and were featured in a report by Amar Ujala.
According to the Amar Ujala report, dated November 2, 2018, the police had lathi-charged at the protestors who were demanding a reduction in cut-off for the recruitment to the post of assistant teachers and to fill in the vacant posts.
Newschecker also found two of these images, which are being circulated in context with the protests over RRB NTPC exam, in a tweet by Rahul Gandhi, dated November 3, 2018.
We conducted a Google reverse image search on the fourth image that is being linked to the ongoing protests over RRB NTPC exam and found it to be from 2018 as well.
We found a tweet by a user @Sana__Siddique, dated November 3, 2018, which carried the same image.
Viral images claiming to show police crackdown on students during ongoing RRB NTPC protests in UP and Bihar are misleading. The viral images are from 2018.
Result: Misleading Content
Twitter Account of Rahul Gandhi
Twitter Account of Sana Siddique
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