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Did an American City Start a Bus Service in Honour of Ambedkar?

The images of the bus and that of BR Ambedkar were morphed together to create a false narrative. 

Updated
WebQoof
3 min read

Video Editor: Ashutosh Bhardwaj

A picture of a bus has been going viral on social media, with a poster of Dalit icon and Father of the Indian Constitution Dr BR Ambedkar and his wife, Savita Ambedkar.

The viral picture has a message along with it which says -

“कोलंबिया (अमेरिका) की सड़कों पर दौड़ती सिटी बस पर बाबा साहब का चित्र यह असली सम्मान है, अमेरिका आज भी बाबा साहब को अपना आदर्श मानता है किन्तु अपने यहां अधिकांश बहुजन भी बाबा साहब के मिशन से भटके हुए हैंll जागरुक हों llllllll जय भीम”. (Translation: Baba Saheb's photo on a city bus in Columbia (America) is a sign of real respect. America still considers him as its ideal. But many of the Bahujans here in India have been misguided from Baba Saheb's mission.)

An archive of the image can be found <a href="https://archive.is/VknEd">here</a>.&nbsp;
An archive of the image can be found here
(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

CLAIM

The image claims that a city bus in Columbia, America featured an image of Dr BR Ambedkar and his wife as a sign of respect. The image with different written messages has been going viral on Facebook and Twitter and has been shared by multiple users.

An archive of the image can be found <a href="https://archive.is/wip/Dbhl3">here</a>.&nbsp;
An archive of the image can be found here
(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)
An archive of the image can be found <a href="https://archive.is/VknEd">here</a>.&nbsp;
An archive of the image can be found here
(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

Facebook user Mahendra Singh Khandelwal shared the image on 19 September and was shared by 9,400 people and liked by 96,000 people while this story was written. A keyword search on Facebook returned several other posts by individuals and groups.

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The image was also shared on Twitter with similar messages.

An archive of the image can be found <a href="https://archive.is/wip/JSsic">here</a>.&nbsp;
An archive of the image can be found here
(Photo: Facebook/Screenshot)
An archive of the image can be found <a href="https://archive.is/wip/mDaYA">here</a>.&nbsp;
An archive of the image can be found here
(Photo: Facebook/Screenshot)
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WHAT WE FOUND

Upon conducting a reverse image search on Google, we found that the image resembled another image of the bus on Wikimedia. The details on Wikimedia suggest that this picture is of a tourist bus in Bath, Somerset, England. This photo was taken by Adrian Pingstone on 28 July 2008.

However, the image found on the Wikimedia does not contain the poster of Dr BR Ambedkar.

This photo was taken by Adrian Pingstone on 28 July 2008.
This photo was taken by Adrian Pingstone on 28 July 2008.
(Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia)
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A side by side comparison of the images shows that the viral image was altered.

Side by side view of the original and altered image.&nbsp;
Side by side view of the original and altered image. 
(Photo: The Quint)

The image of Dr Ambedkar and his wife that is seen in the viral post was found in a blog from 2017.

Did an American City Start a Bus Service in Honour of Ambedkar?
(Photo Courtesy: Forward Press)
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It is worth noting that Dr BR Ambedkar received his PhD in Economics from Columbia University in 1927 and an honorary degree in 1952, as mentioned on the University’s website.

So, after checking the images, we found that the images were morphed together to create a false narrative.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9643651818, or e-mail it to us at webqoof@thequint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)

(Editor’s Note: An earlier version of the story incorrectly mentioned Bath as the largest city in England. The error is regretted.)

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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