Social media posts alleging the Congress party roped in actors to play the part of stranded migrants speaking to Rahul Gandhi, are false.
Facebook posts - showing pictures of the former Congress president interacting with migrant workers - are being shared with captions claiming that the party enlisted 'fake migrants' for a photo-op with Gandhi. BOOM found the claims to be false.
Rahul Gandhi had on May 16, 2020 met with a group of migrant workers who were walking from Harayana to their homes in Jhansi (Uttar Pradesh). After interacting with them for nearly an hour, Gandhi had arranged for vehicles to drop the migrants to their homes. Read more about it here.
However, a set of two images from the meeting are being used to create a fake narrative around the incident.
One of the images in the post shows Gandhi listening to a migrant worker while a woman beside him looks on keenly. The second image shows the same woman sitting in a car. A Hindi caption with the post claims 'another scandal by Congress. Even the migrants who met 'Pappu' turned out to be actors. How much more will you fall, sycophants'.
(Hindi: कांग्रेस का एक और #घोटाला...पप्पू से मिलने वाले मजदुर भी नकली निकले ...चमचों और किस हद तक गिरोगे)
The post can be viewed below and its archived version can be accessed here.
BOOM looked up Congress party's Twitter handle for the images. We found the same woman among other migrant workers in one of the images shared on May 16 from Congress' official Twitter handle.
The pain of the people can only be understood by leaders who care. Here are a few glimpses of Shri @RahulGandhi interacting with migrant labourers in Delhi.#RahulCaresForIndia pic.twitter.com/wo0ULmpT7L— Congress (@INCIndia) May 16, 2020
We also found another set of four pictures tweeted by Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee chief Ajay Kumar Lallu.
Lallu, in his tweet, says 'Rahul Gandhi met migrant labourers walking from Delhi's Ashram area towards MP and UP. He shared their pains. All of them have been sent home'.
दिल्ली के आश्रम इलाकें में मप्र और उप्र की ओर पैदल चल रहे प्रवासी मजदूरों से अचानक मिलने पुहंचे श्री राहुल गांधी जी।— Ajay Kumar Lallu (@AjayLalluINC) May 16, 2020
कुछ देर उनके साथ रुककर उनके दर्द को समझा।
इन सभी को इनके घर भेज दिया गया है। pic.twitter.com/QZ4jENs2ZC
In three of the pictures tweeted by Lallu, one can see the same woman whose photo has been shared in the viral post. In one of the pictures she can be seen sitting in a car along with another migrant worker.
The incident had also been covered by several newspapers. As per media reports, Rahul Gandhi had met a group of migrant workers returning on foot from Harayana to UP and MP. After interacting with them for a while, Gandhi had asked members of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee to arrange vehicles to drop the migrants home.
Wire agency ANI had also tweeted a set of four pictures of migrants sitting in cars waiting to be taken to their homes. The woman in the viral post can also be seen in the second picture tweeted by ANI.
Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi interacted with migrant labourers who were walking near Sukhdev Vihar flyover to return to their home states. Party volunteers later arranged vehicles to take them to their homes. A labourer, Monu says "Coming from Haryana,have to go to Jhansi" pic.twitter.com/SMbnejiZpK— ANI (@ANI) May 16, 2020
Several video reports about the incident show the same woman getting inside a car arranged by Congress workers. Watch the video below.