ADVERTISEMENTREMOVE AD

Fake Newspaper Clip Claims Rahul Gandhi Was Detained in US by FBI

The clipping claimed the son of a former PM was detained at a US airport for carrying “drugs & unaccounted cash.”

Updated
WebQoof
4 min read
story-hero-img
i
Aa
Aa
Small
Aa
Medium
Aa
Large
The clipping claimed the son of a former PM was detained at a US airport for carrying “drugs & unaccounted cash.”
Don’t fall for fake news, click here to check out The Quint’s WebQoof stories.  

CLAIM

S Gurumurthy, currently serving as the part-time director of the RBI, on 16 April tweeted the picture of a newspaper clip, which claimed that an Indian politician had been detained at the Boston airport after the airport security "found him in possession of banned drugs and unaccounted cash."

The clipping claimed the son of a former PM was detained at a US airport for carrying “drugs & unaccounted cash.”
The tweet, though now deleted, had over 400 retweets in just 35 minutes.
(Photo: The Quint)

The article further claimed that the arrested politician was the son of a former Indian Prime Minister, and was later released after the intervention of the Indian Ambassador to the US.

The clipping, headlined "Indian Politician Arrested" was dated 30 September 2001, with the masthead of the paper reading "The Boston".

The tweet, though now deleted, had over 400 retweets in just 35 minutes.

ADVERTISEMENTREMOVE AD

TRUE OR FALSE?

The newspaper clipping is manufactured, and has been made to mimic a legit newspaper from Boston, presumably 'The Boston Globe.'

The clipping claimed the son of a former PM was detained at a US airport for carrying “drugs & unaccounted cash.”
A comparison of the two mastheads.
(Photo: Altered by The Quint)

A tweet by Alt News founder Pratik Sinha showed that the newspaper clipping had been made using an online tool.

The clip has been created using a newspaper clipping generator named fodey.com, which enables users to create any newspaper clipping by just filling out some fields.

The clipping claimed the son of a former PM was detained at a US airport for carrying “drugs & unaccounted cash.”
The website enables users to create any newspaper clipping by just filling out some fields.
(Photo courtesy: Screenshot from the website)

With the clipping’s authenticity verified, we move on to examining the contents under it.

'INDIAN POLITICIAN' RAHUL GANDHI?

The fake newspaper clipping claims that an 'Indian politician' who was the son of a former Indian Prime Minister had been detained by the Boston airport security – indicating that it was Rahul Gandhi.

However, it is imperative to note that according to the Congress party's website, Gandhi did not announce his entry into politics till 2004, which means that back in 2001, he still was not an "Indian politician", as the clipping claimed.

ADVERTISEMENTREMOVE AD

WAS RAHUL GANDHI DETAINED BY THE FBI AT BOSTON AIRPORT?

According to a source-based article by The Hindu, dated 29 September 2001, the current Congress President had been reportedly been detained by FBI officials at the Boston airport for about an hour, while enroute to Washington.

Quoting sources, the article claimed that Gandhi had been detained by FBI agents "who would not let him go even after checking his travel documents thoroughly." They also reportedly checked his baggage, despite being informed that he was the son of a former Indian Prime Minister.

The report then goes on to state that Gandhi was allowed to leave only after Sonia Gandhi intervened and called Lalit Mansingh, the then Indian Ambassador in the US.

However, speaking to the daily's Washington correspondent Sridhar Krishnaswami, Indian diplomats then stationed in the US denied any knowledge of Gandhi's trip to Boston, and rubbished reports of Mansingh's intervention. They added that the US agencies were under no obligation to inform the Indian Embassy of any contact with Rahul Gandhi since he did not enjoy any security protection there.

The Quint spoke to Krishnaswami, who said that he too had no information on why Gandhi might have been detained that day.

“I have no idea why he might have been detained. At that time there was some chatter, so I spoke to Mr Mansingh, who was the Indian Ambassador then, and some other officials at the embassy – all of whom flat out told me they had no idea something like this ever took place. Now why he came to Boston is totally beyond my comprehension. The officials told me that reports of him being detained are not true, which we carried in our report. I, of course, had no means of any independent verification.”
Sridhar Krishnaswami to The Quint

Meanwhile, The Hindu article noted that the "heightened security precautions" in the US at that point were in the aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks and that several people were being subject to layers of security checks and intese questioning by the FBI and other agencies in some cases.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9910181818, 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.)

Published: 
Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Member
Read More
×
×