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Fake Quote! CM Kejriwal Didn’t Say ‘India Should Give Up Kashmir’

A fake quote from a cropped article ascribed to Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal says, “India should give up Kashmir.” 

Updated
India
3 min read
Fake Quote! CM Kejriwal Didn’t Say ‘India Should Give Up Kashmir’
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A Facebook page that goes by the name योगी आदित्यनाथ की सेना (Yogi Adityanath ki Sena) posted an image which looked like a cropped article from a Hindi e-paper clip. The article’s title was a quote ascribed to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal –“India should concede its right on Kashmir as Kashmiris want independence.” The post was shared nearly 5,000 times.

A Twitter user named @RaviNEGI4BJP , who identifies himself as a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party and is followed by Railway Minister Piyush Goyal’s Office, had shared the same newspaper clip in June 2018.

He wrote an accompanying caption that said – “If it were to be left to Kejri Ali, even Delhi would be sold.”
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Another Twitter handle followed by Piyush Goyal’s Office shared the newspaper clip in June 2018. A few other individual users and Facebook pages/groups circulated the same earlier this year.

Fake E-Paper Clip Circulating Since 2016

There are certain observational hints that call the bluff of the fake e-paper clip. First, it does not include a date, and second, it has some serious grammatical flaws. In the first paragraph, the article addresses CM Kejriwal as “Kejri” which is uncharacteristic of a mainstream newspaper. In the subsequent paragraph, a statement by Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif is not written in the form of a direct quote. As one reads further, similar slights can be identified. However, the most significant indicator of the falseness of the clip is the fact that it says nothing about Kejriwal’s quote; it is only mentioned in the title.

Fake Quote! CM Kejriwal Didn’t Say ‘India Should Give Up Kashmir’
(Photo Courtesy: ALT News)

Alt News was also unable to locate the article or any other media reports that might have published similar accounts. But we found the possible origin of the fake clip. In 2015, a parody account of Delhi CM Kejriwal had posted the same clip with a changed title and Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s photograph instead of Kejriwal.

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Observing the clips juxtaposed together, the similarity is evident. Not only is the ‘Kejriwal article’ the same, but the article on the right – “पाकिस्तान में जलाए गए भारतीय ध्यज (Indian flags burned in Pakistan)” – is too.

Fake Quote! CM Kejriwal Didn’t Say ‘India Should Give Up Kashmir’
(Photo Courtesy: ALT News)

We found that the quote ascribed to Kejriwal has been circulating since 2016. Websites like mobilenews24.com had also written articles on it, but later deleted them.

A Twitter user followed by Piyush Goyal’s Office and fake news website Postcard News shared the news clip last year.

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An Identical Past

This wasn’t an isolated incident of a manufactured e-paper clip being circulated on social media to spread disinformation. In July 2017, BJP MP Pratap Sinha had tweeted a Times of India story with a distorted headline. Earlier in June, a fake quote was ascribed to former President Pranab Mukherjee using a manufactured newspaper clip. That same month, another fake e-paper clip was circulated in the name of former HU student Rohith Vemula.

As consumers of daily news on the internet, we are attuned to believe e-paper clips because they carry within them an inherent genuineness. However, with instances of manufactured or morphed news clips emerging on social media, a self-fact-check is important. As misinformation is easy to spread, a quick fact-check prevents further circulation of fake news.

To establish the authenticity of such clips, any sentence picked from an article on the paper can be searched on Google. Most media outlets with e-papers have online versions of their reports and these would show up if the news is genuine.

(This story was first published on Alt News and has been republished here with permission.)

(Not convinced of a story you came across on social media and want it verified? Send us the details at WebQoof@TheQuint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.)

(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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