The BBC documentary, India: The Modi question, which questions Narendra Modi’s role in the 2002 Gujarat riots has been banned in India by the BJP government by using emergency powers under the 2021 IT rules.
Against this backdrop, several supporters of the Prime Minister have claimed while sharing a picture of Congress MP Rahul Gandhi that the latter had met the producer of the BBC documentary sometime last year.
Kavinder Gupta, the former deputy CM of Jammu and Kashmir, tweeted the photo and wrote, “Rahul with BBC documentary producer six months back. So it seems producer had planned the documentary six months back and financed by……..?”
— Kavinder Gupta (@KavinderGupta) January 25, 2023
Vishnu Vardhan Reddy, the BJP state general secretary of Andhra Pradesh, shared the image and wrote, “6 months ago @RahulGandhi went to UK & met the BBC producer. A picture is worth a thousand words!”
6 months ago @RahulGandhi went to UK & met the BBC producer.
— Vishnu Vardhan Reddy (@SVishnuReddy) January 28, 2023
A Twitter account named @RudraBvm shared this picture with the same claim. The tweet has over 9,000 views and went viral. The photo also has a text at the bottom that reads, “6 months back Rahul went to the UK and met the BBC producer. Now we know why.”
Rahul and the BBC producer. Think about it. pic.twitter.com/ZR7Kv8Tm3a
— anil nag 2.0🇮🇳 (@RudraBvm) January 25, 2023
Hundreds of Twitter users have shared this image with similar claims indirectly and directly suggesting that Rahul Gandhi was behind a conspiracy to malign Narendra Modi’s image through the BBC documentary. Below we have added a screen recording showing the virality of the image. The image is also viral on Facebook.
We performed a reverse image search using Google Lens and came across several news articles that used this image while covering Rahul Gandhi’s London trip in May 2022.
The individuals accompanying Rahul Gandhi in the picture are Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn in the centre and entrepreneur Sam Pitroda on the right, who served as an advisor to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and is a close ally of the Congress Party.
After the image went viral recently as Rahul meeting ‘the BBC producer’, Sam Pitroda himself tweeted the image with a clarification.
In this photo, the First is @RahulGandhi, and the person in the middle is my friend @jeremycorbyn, with me. Mr. Corbyn is a British Politician (here is a link to his Wikipedia – https://t.co/O6r6SNf8NA) and not a @BBC executive.@BBCNews @BBCTwo pic.twitter.com/53EVUn9je9
— Sam Pitroda (@sampitroda) January 25, 2023
Therefore, this picture is not of Rahul Gandhi meeting a BBC producer. In fact, the picture shows him meeting Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn and Sam Pitroda during a London visit.
Vansh Shah is an intern with Alt News.
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