West Bengal’s Minakhan police arrested four people for vandalising and setting on fire homes of BJP leaders and activists on January 13. Anandabazar Patrika reported that BJP minority leader Nur Islam Gazi’s house was among those set ablaze in Dhuturdaha village. The party has blamed local TMC cadre for the violence.

BJP West Bengal tweeted about the incident along with an infographic that carried West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s photo against a picture of a blazing fire.

The Bengali text on the infographic reads, “Trinamool’s lawless conduct has again come to light. Trinamool goons set ablaze BJP politician Nur Islam’s shops and school on fire. Trinamool did this because BJP stood up against its anarchy in Basirhat. How many more victims of political violence will there be in West Bengal? Give answers, Mamata Banerjee. (আবারো তৃণমূলের অনাচারের নিদর্শন এলো প্রকাশ্যে. বিজেপি নেতা নূর ইসলামের দোকান-স্কুলে আগুন লাগলো তৃণমূলের গুন্ডারা. বসিরহাটে তৃণমূলের অরাজকতার বিরুদ্ধে রুখে দাঁড়ানোয় এই কান্ড করে তৃণমূলবাহিনী. আর কত মানুষ রাজনৈতিক হিংসার শিকার হবে পশ্চিমবঙ্গে? জবাব দাও পিসি.)”

BJP Bengal posted this on both Twitter and Facebook.

The same Bengali caption – বিরোধীদের উপর আর কত অত্যাচার করবেন পিসি? আর কত মানুষকে রাজনৈতিক হিংসার শিকার হতে হবে আপনার রাজত্বে?– that translates to “How many more people will Mamata Banerjee oppress? How many more will become victims of political violence?” was used by several local BJP handles.

The infographic is widespread on Facebook.

Image of California fires used on the poster

A simple Google reserve image search after cropping the picture of the blazing fires leads one to a report in Daily Mail published in May 2014. The image is described as, “A house in Carlsbad, California is consumed by the wildfire yesterday. About 500 acres have burned in the blaze, which has been fueled by record heat, high winds and dry conditions.” It carries a logo of Getty Images. We then found the same image on the stock photo agency. According to Getty Images, “A house is consumed by a wildfire May 14, 2014 in San Marcos, California.”

BJP West Bengal and other local BJP handles used a seven-year-old image of California wildfires to depict BJP Bengal minority leader Nur Islam Gazi’s property burnt down in Minakhan allegedly by TMC workers.

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About the Author

Pooja Chaudhuri is a senior editor at Alt News.