No, NSA Ajit Doval Didn’t Write a Letter Lauding Kumbh Efforts

A huge portion of the text in the viral letter had been lifted from another official one signed by Doval.

Updated
WebQoof
3 min read
We compared the viral letter with an official one and noticed that a huge portion of the text had been lifted from the latter.
i

A viral letter purportedly written by National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval lauding Uttarakhand Chief Secretary Om Prakash’s efforts during the Kumbh Mela held in Haridwar is doing the rounds on social media.

However, we compared the viral letter with an official one and noticed that a huge portion of the text had been lifted from the latter. We also noticed few grammatical and spelling errors. Further, government officials have also called the letter “fake”.

CLAIM

Senior Advocate Prashant Bhushan tweeted the letter claiming that Ajit Doval complimented the chief secretary of Uttarakhand for “ogranizing the Kumbh Mela & unashamedly asking him to promote the RSS ideology!! (sic)”

Later, he took down his tweet.

The viral letter states that Doval appreciated state chief secretary’s role in maintaining synergy with several government agencies, ensuring coordination with police and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) for “maintaining piece and implementing COVID-19 protocols”.

You can view the archived version <a href="https://archive.is/nPyOB">here</a>.
You can view the archived version here.
(Source: Twitter/ Screenshot)

Several social media users shared the letter on Twitter and Facebook with similar claims. The archived version of the posts can be viewed here , here and here.

WHAT WE FOUND OUT

We ran a keyword search with the text mentioned in the viral letter and came across an article by The Economic Times that had published a PTI report in December 2019.

NSA Ajit Doval had then appreciated the efforts of the Uttar Pradesh government in maintaining peace and communal harmony after the verdict pronounced in the Ayodhya case.

The article mentioned that the letter was addressed to UP Chief Secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari and mentioned, “I compliment you for your commendable efforts in handling the situation in Uttar Pradesh following the Ayodhya verdict. I appreciate your pivotal role in maintaining synergy with all the organs of the state and central government and ensuring coordination with the police for maintaining peace and communal harmony.”

Even the viral letter mentions almost the same text with some tweaks.

TEXT OF VIRAL LETTER LIFTED FROM AN OLD ONE

With the help of relevant keywords, we found that journalist Aman Sharma had tweeted the letter addressed to the UP government in 2019. The same article was also published in a Free Press journal article then.

On comparing the viral letter with the 2019 one, we found that a huge chunk of the text had been lifted from the latter and used in the viral one.

The viral letter made changes, such as Ayodhya verdict was replaced by Kumbh Mela. A line mentioning RSS context was added in the viral one.

Left: Viral letter. Right: Official letter.
Left: Viral letter. Right: Official letter.
(Photo: Altered by The Quint)

Earlier in May 2020, another letter was viral, with the claim that the National Security Advisor wrote a letter congratulating Commissioner Secretary, Ladakh for handling of the border situation. The letter carried a similar text as the viral one on Kumbh Mela and was then called out by PIB’s fact-checking arm.

VARIOUS GRAMMATICAL AND SPELLING ERRORS

We also noticed several grammatical errors in the viral letter. For instance, the entire line that reads “I also appreciating that you use your...” is grammatically incorrect.

Also, “resulted peaceful conduct” should have been “resulted in peaceful conduct”. Further, the word ‘ideology’ was misspelt as “idelogoy.”

 No, NSA Ajit Doval Didn’t Write a Letter Lauding Kumbh Efforts
(Photo: Altered by The Quint)

VIRAL LETTER IS ‘FAKE’, SAY OFFICIALS

News agency ANI reported that the government officials have called the viral letter claiming to have been written by Ajit Doval as “fake”. However no officials were named by the news agency.

Evidently, a fake letter was circulated on social media claiming that National Security Advisor Ajit Doval wrote a letter to Uttarakhand chief secretary lauding his efforts on handling the Kumbh Mela.

(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.)

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

Published: 
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!