When it comes to stupid and meaningless fact-checks, the first thing that comes to one’s mind is the leftist propaganda website AltNews, a self-described ‘fact-checker’ with a history of whitewashing Islamists under the garb of doing ‘fact-check’.
From weaponising reverse search image service to nitpicking about trivial and petty details about an incident to muddle readers of the prevailing narrative, AltNews has mastered a variety of techniques for its foolish yet pernicious endeavour to bolster its propaganda.
However, it seems that other organizations have not only taken a cue from AltNews in proceeding with such dumb fact-checks, but they have also aced out the far-left propaganda website in their game of confusing the readers with inconsequential and vacuous ‘fact-checks’.
India Today ‘fact-checks’ trivial details about a viral image to undermine claims made about Uniform Civil Code (UCC)
India Today recently came up with a cringe-worthy ‘fact-check’ that would put even the propagandists at AltNews to shame. It ‘fact-checked’ a viral picture of a large Muslim family to refute the claim that in the absence of the Uniform Civil Code (UCC), large Muslim families stand to reap all the benefits of taxpayers’ money.
An image of a large Muslim family seated on a bike had gone viral on the internet with the claims that in the absence of the Uniform Civil Code, such families obtain an undue advantage of the government subsidies and prove as a burden on the country’s economic health. The image and the attendant claims were made to make a case for the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code.
However, instead of verifying the authenticity of the claims made through the image, the India Today ‘fact-check’ placed its emphasis on verifying the origins of the image being shared online. In its ‘investigation’, India Today found that the image is not from India, but from neighbouring Bangladesh, a low-key attempt to imply that the claims made through the image were erroneous.
It further highlighted that the image is not a recent one and has been on the internet since 2017 to cast aspersions on the claims that the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) is the need of the hour for India where a section of the population exerts pressure on the government treasury through the agency of unbridled reproduction.
Firstly, whether the image is from India or elsewhere is hardly of any consequence in the context in which it is being shared on social media. The fact that the image is not from India does not negate the claim that Indian Muslim families don’t breed like the one shown in the image. It only serves to muddle readers with extraneous facts in an attempt to undermine the claims made with the image.
Secondly, the image that is being shared is from 2017 and not a recent one is yet another inconsequential detail that has no bearing on the claim that in the absence of UCC, such outsize Muslim families stand to reap all the benefits of taxpayers’ money. This unnecessary bit of detail was included in the ‘fact-check’ to further undermine the claim that big Muslim families negative impact the government treasury.
Demand for the implementation of UCC soars
Far from carrying out the ‘fact check’, the shoddy attempt by India Today to proclaim that the image of a Muslim family is old and from Bangladesh ended up discrediting the legitimate demand for the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code, which is steadily gaining traction across the country. Besides the population explosion issue, a host of problems, including the chronic issue of communal strifes in different parts of the country, has added to the growing clamour for the implementation of the UCC.
Even the judiciary has acknowledged that UCC is long overdue and the central government should take effective measures to bring it. In November 2021, Allahabad High Court asked the central government to take steps for the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) across India under article 44 of the Constitution of India.
The court had asked the Central government to consider setting up a panel for implementing the mandate of Article 44 regarding UCC, which says that the “state shall endeavour to secure for the citizens a Uniform Civil Code (UCC) throughout the territory of India”.