The US President Donald Trump is scheduled to be received by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday in Ahmedabad, in his home state Gujarat, and will travel to Delhi for further talks on Tuesday. The India tour of President Donald Trump is expected to be a historic landmark as beyond trade talks, the optics of Trump visiting India alone is said to boost ties between the nations.
However, as the political discourse goes in India, the scheduled between the heads of the state of the largest and the oldest democracies has not gone down well with the opposition parties who have made opposing Prime Minister Modi with crass comments, lies and propaganda the norm.
Ahead of the Trump visit to Ahmedabad, a fake, morphed image from Ahmedabad was shared in a bid to undermine the historic meet.
Twitter user Aishwary Verma shared an image that shows a wall, painted with the image of President Donald Trump and Narendra Modi, being defaced by a urinating man. With the image, Aishwary asked other users to ‘caption the image’.
Following this tweet, another tweet was published by Aishwary in which he used the image to mock Prime Minister Modi and his supporters further.
Aishwary wrote that an “innocent Bhakt” (A word used a pejorative by Leftists for supporters of PM Modi) is trying to strengthen the wall by urinating on it.
Aishwary Verma, who shared this image with pejorative connotations is actually an Aam Admi Party Social Media in charge and campaign coordinator.
The image which has been used by Verma to mock the meeting between PM Modi and President Donald Trump and also to hurl insults at the supporters of the Prime Minister is actually a hastily photoshopped image designed specifically to undermine the historic meet.
The original image is an Associated Press image that has been used in the AP article dated 18th February, headlined, “India hastily builds wall along slum ahead of Trump visit”. While this news is actually untrue and has been contested by officials, the image used by the AP article is the one which has been morphed by the AAP functionary.
The AP image was clicked by photographer Ajit Solanki according to the credits mentioned in the AP article.
One can see that the image used by the AAP functionary and the one used by AP is the same since the man riding the bike appears in both images.
Further, if one notices carefully, there are other markers of the image being morphed.
Looking at the image, it is evident that on the wall, there is a shadow image of a nearby bush, however, there is no shadow image of the man urinating.
It is thus evident that the Associated Press image was taken by the Aam Admi Party functionary and morphed to superimpose the urinating man just to undermine and mock the meeting between Trump and PM Modi.
As a result of this fake image being propagated by AAP functionary, several crass comments started pouring in, a sample of which follows.
— Aashu Sky™?? (@aashishsaini18) February 20, 2020
This is not the first time that AAP functionaries have resorted to blatant lying. Three Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) workers from Haryana were arrested on 29 December 2018 for circulating fake news about CM Manohar Lal Khattar. The complaint was registered by Bharatiya Janta Party, under IPC sections of 153 (provocation with intent to cause riots), 153A (promoting enmity on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, etc.) and IT Act section 66 (cyber crimes). During the Haryana Mayoral elections, an image had gone viral on social media which claimed that Khattar had said he is chief minister only for the Punjabis and he has nothing to do with other communities but he image was fake.
Right after the Pulwama attack too, an image was circulated by a Pro-AAP page on social media which quoted false data to paint the NDA government in poor light.
In fact, in April 2019, Aam Aadmi Party worker in Vadodara, Ghanshyam Parmar, who had put up morphed pictures with a fake message claiming Prime Minister Modi’s sudden death was arrested by Vadodara Police.