BJP supporters use a picture from 2013 to portray Haldwani & Muslims in bad light.

Claim

This is what the Supreme Court has legitimized today!

#HaldwaniEncroachment

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Explanation

Haldwani is a small town in the state of Uttarakhand and the town has been in the news for several days now. The neighborhood of Banbhoolpura is located adjacent to the Haldwani railway station.

Around 4500 homes in that neighborhood are alleged to be built in railways’ land but the residents of Haldwani claim that they have been living there for more than 50-60 years with some said to be living prior to Independence.

Haldwani: Crowd gathers at public meeting held in Banbhulpura – Photo: Amar Ujala

The railways claim the ownership of the land and moved to the Uttarakhand High Court which ordered eviction of more than 4000 houses. Since then, there have been several protests by the residents of the locality and an appeal was made in the Supreme Court challenging the High Court verdict. Many BJP supporters have called this verdict “injustice” as the residents of the community are predominantly Muslims, in addition to some Hindus too.

Archive Link to Rishi Bagree’s Tweet

Several right-wing supporters have been spreading this image following the Supreme Court verdict which issued a temporary stay on the eviction. These claims come with an insinuation that the picture shows the alleged encroachment in Haldwani. See here, here, here, here, and here.

What’s the truth?

We did a reverse image search for the alleged Haldwani photo shared by several BJP supporters. In our search, we first came across an article from News Click which was published in November 2018. But there was no description of the image in that article.

Upon further search, an article from ‘abc News’ which was uploaded in January 2016 had used the same image and it had a description that the image was taken in Kolkata in December 2013 by Samir Hussein, and it was mentioned that the image was sourced from Getty Images, a popular site for stock images that are available for purchase.

In the Getty Images website, we were able to find the image on Getty images for sale at various prices for various use cases. The image comes with a description that states the image was taken on December 2013 in Kolkata by Samir Hussein.

So, an image that was taken in 2013 is used to claim or insinuate that it is from Haldwani where the railway land is alleged to be accused of encroachment. This has been spread by several BJP supporters and party members including Priti Gandhi, who had spread several such misinformation in the past, some of which can be read below.

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Conclusion

An image from 2013 taken in Kolkata is used by right-wing supporters to portray it as Haldwani encroachments in the state of Uttarakhand which is caught in a legal and political battle.

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Ramasamy Jayaprakash

Ramasamy works as a Senior Sub-Editor at YouTurn and writes articles in Tamil and English. He also makes videos for YouTurn's Tamil & English YouTube channels.
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