No Piyush Goyal, These Pics Don’t Show Electrification of Villages
On Sunday, 29 April, Piyush Goyal tweeted a congratulatory message for Narendra Modi for “the elimination of darkness from the lives of fellow Indian villagers”. The Railways Minister shared a comparative image showing how the Prime Minister had successfully electrified the villages in India before the set target of 1,000 days.
The minister does not mention whether the images have been used for representational purpose or whether he wanted to assert, with the use of the pictures, that the government has achieved its target or rural electrification. But what’s even more unclear is the timeline of the “before” and the “after” photos.
Now, if you are thinking why the use of the images is questionable (apart from that they are not new as mentioned above), then here’s why.
Let’s first tackle the origins of the two images.
The Pictures are Actually From NASA, 2017
These two images were taken by NASA last year.
In 2017, NASA released these beautiful illuminated images to show how cities have grown and how the population has spread in the past few years. In other words, they capture India’s urban growth.
The US space agency had released these night-time images of earth, referred to as ‘night lights’, which included a detailed view of India and its surrounding areas.
Nothing Fake About NASA Images: Piyush Goyal
Twitterati took it upon themselves to correct Goyal’s mistake.
A few Twitter users even called the image fake.
However, for clarity of our readers, we will mention again the pictures aren’t FAKE but have been misrepresented.
Later, during the day on 30 April, the Railway Minister’s office issued a clarification saying that the images aren’t fake. They even posted a link to the NASA website and a link to a National Geographic article to corroborate their claim.
Despite the clarification, the question is about the misrepresentation of the image and whether they were used intentionally or not. There was no doubt about the authenticity of the image but the doubt about the usage of image still persists.
(The article has been updated to clarify that The Quint did not call the images fake. We questioned the use of the pictures in the Railways Minister’s tweet. We have also added the response of his office.)
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