It has been exactly one year today since Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation and announced demonetisation, declaring Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 currency notes illegal tenders. Like any reform, this garnered extreme reactions from either side of political spectrum. While most people hailed this as a bold move to curb rampant corruption, the opposition went all guns blazing to term demonetisation biggest blunder and failure of Modi government.
Congress, which is on a fast track of losing relevance across the nation, spread lies about the move. Anti corruption crusader Arvind Kejriwal was caught spreading lies to hurt the demonetisation drive.
Another good thing demonetisation did was to awaken the humanity in public at large. Everyone who stood in the line kept looking for a sob story to be shared on social media for political brownie points. One such story was of an 80 year old retired army man whose face streaming with tears became the ‘face of demonetisation’. Using this image, the opposition accused the Modi government of being anti-poor and deprived of humanity. The image, as it turns out, was taken out of context and peddled by propagandists to tarnish the image of the government.
The image is back in circulation since past few days showing a united face of the Opposition.
— Ankit Lal (@AnkitLal) November 8, 2017
“एक आँसू भी हुकूमत के लिए ख़तरा है
तुमने देखा नहीं आँखों का समुंदर होना” pic.twitter.com/r9NuCkmO6t
— Office of RG (@OfficeOfRG) November 8, 2017
From Aam Aadmi Party’s Photoshop expert to Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, many shared the image. Fortunately, Nand Lal, the former soldier did not have a heart wrenching story about his tearful face. Yes, he stood in line for hours at an SBI branch, and broke down after not getting cash. A year later, it has been revealed that Nand Lal’s crying face was captured when he was pushed by someone and a woman stepped on his foot.
This is how a picture clicked out of context became the face of impact of demonetisation. Lal is now happy with demonetisation, and as a staunch nationalist, for having served in the army for 20 years, he says he will abide by any decision of the government.