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Fake Tweet on Pranab Mukherjee Attributed to Rana Ayyub Goes Viral

We found multiple discrepancies in the format of the viral tweet to confirm that it is fake.

Published
WebQoof
3 min read
According to a viral screenshot, Ayyub, after the demise of Pranab Mukherjee tweeted that after Mukherjee’s death, Afzal Guru will now finally rest in peace.
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After former President Pranab Mukherjee passed away on 31 August, screenshot of a fake tweet attributed to journalist Rana Ayyub started doing the rounds on social media.

According to the viral screenshot, Ayyub, after the demise of Pranab Mukherjee tweeted, “Afzal Guru is at peace today”.

Fake Tweet on Pranab Mukherjee Attributed to Rana Ayyub Goes Viral
(The viral screenshot)

However, we found multiple discrepancies in the format of the viral tweet to confirm that it is fake and was never tweeted by Ayyub.

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CLAIM

The tweet attributed to Ayyub reads: “The man who rejected martyr Afzal Guru’s petition is dead. Afzal Guru is at peace today!”

Mukherjee, during his tenure as the President of India, had rejected the mercy petition of Guru, the main accused in the 2001 Parliament attacks.

The aforementioned screenshot, which is being widely shared on Facebook and Twitter, is being circulated with a caption saying “This is how a jihadi mind works”.

An archived version of the tweet can be accessed <a href="https://archive.is/1Y3qi">here</a>.
An archived version of the tweet can be accessed here.
(Source: Twitter/Screenshot)
An archived version of the post can be accessed <a href="https://archive.is/VcVCI">here</a>.
An archived version of the post can be accessed here.
(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)
An archived version of the post can be accessed <a href="https://archive.is/hEJ3N">here</a>.
An archived version of the post can be accessed here.
(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

WHAT WE FOUND

We searched Ayyub’s Twitter timeline and found no such tweet following which we carefully analysed the tweet in the viral screenshot and compared its format with that of other tweets.

Comparison of the viral tweet (L) and another tweet by Rana Ayyub (R).
Comparison of the viral tweet (L) and another tweet by Rana Ayyub (R).
(Photo: Twitter/Altered by The Quint)

After a close analysis, we observed four formatting errors in the viral tweet.

  • The space between the username and text in the viral tweet is more than what can be seen in a regular tweet.
  • The dateline is missing in the viral tweet.
  • The ‘comments’, ‘retweet’ and ‘like’ icons in regular tweets are left-aligned unlike the centre alignment in the viral tweet.
  • The viral tweet did not reflect the ‘share’ option.

We also found a tweet by Ayyub where she has herself called out the fake tweet.

As illustrated, a fake tweet is being circulated on social media to insinuate that Ayyub rejoiced the death of the former president.

(We’ve reached out to Rana Ayyub for a comment and the story will be updated as and when we hear from her.)

(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.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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