In the backdrop of the West Bengal assembly election, a newspaper clipping has been shared claiming that 66 fake EVMs were seized from a BJP leader’s residence. A Facebook user posted the image and wrote, “All preparations have been made to win the Bengal elections, it’s only a formality now.”

NSUI Coordinator Krishna Mohan Sharma tweeted the photo as well. It amassed over 400 retweets at the time of writing. (Archive link)

Several users have been sharing it on Facebook and Twitter.

Posted by Pappu shaikh pappu shaikh on Thursday, March 18, 2021

Incident from 2018

The text above the headline reads, “It was built to attract voters in Jaitaran” and the byline says, “News Service/Navjyoti, Beawar”. Both Jaitaran and Beawar are cities in Rajasthan.

Alt News performed a keyword search and came across a Patrika story dated December 4, 2018, carrying a similar photograph. According to the news outlet, the police recovered 66 fake EVMs from a housing board flat in Beawar, Ajmer. The fake machines had independent candidate Surendra Goyal’s name and election symbol, who was contesting from Jaitaran.

Surendra Goyal was a member of the BJP who resigned from the party after he was not given a ticket in the 2018 assembly elections. Following this, he filed for nomination from Jaitaran as an independent candidate. This is also mentioned in the viral newspaper clipping however, its headline misleadingly suggests that the candidate is still with the BJP.

Dainik Bhaskar had also reported on the raid three years ago.

A clipping of an old news story about 66 fake EVMs recovered from Beawar was falsely linked to the ongoing West Bengal assembly elections. The incident occurred in 2018 during the Rajasthan assembly elections.

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About the Author

Kinjal Parmar holds a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology. However, her keen interest in journalism, drove her to pursue journalism from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication. At Alt News since 2019, she focuses on authentication of information which includes visual verification, media misreports, examining mis/disinformation across social media. She is the lead video producer at Alt News and manages social media accounts for the organization.