Five states will hold elections: Telangana on November 30, Madhya Pradesh on November 17, Rajasthan on November 23, Mizoram on November 7, and Chhattisgarh in two phases on November 7 and 17. Many false claims about political leaders and parties are going viral on social media platforms. One newspaper cutting showing Kamal Nath stating that no idols of God should be seen inside offices is going viral on social media sites.
The claim made by the user
A user named Swami Ramsarnacharya Pandey shared a newspaper cutting in which it is stated Kamal Nath issued a decree: no idols of God should be seen in the offices. He also wrote: “Kamal Nath reiterated his order at the behest of Arvind Kejriwal and gave strict instructions to all the Congress workers of Madhya Pradesh that after winning the elections, all festivals related to Hindu culture will be banned”.
DFRAC team reverse-searched the image of newspaper cutting on Google. We came across a media report of Punjab Kesari. In the media report, it was mentioned “A news published against District Collector Anurag Chaudhary in a local newspaper has become a topic of discussion in the entire area. Due to this, questions are being raised on his reputation. It is written in the newspaper that Collector Anurag Chaudhary has issued an order for all government offices not to put pictures of any God inside their offices. Not only this, it is written in the newspaper that action will be taken against those who do not follow this order of the Collector”.
Furthermore, in the media report it was also stated that “ Troubled by this news, the collector has also expressed his pain on Facebook. Collector Anurag Chaudhary has written that I am a completely religious person and to what extent is it appropriate to publish in my name what I have not said, what I have not sent, what I have not written. There should be an impartial investigation into this”.
When we investigated the Facebook account of Anurag Chaudhary we found the same post dated 26 March 2019 which was published in the newspaper in which he clarified that he didn’t make any such statement.
Therefore, it is clear from the DFRAC’s fact-check that the claim related to Kamal Nath stating, no idols of God should be put inside offices is misleading. This newspaper cutting was associated with Anurag Chaudhary which was further clarified by him that it was not true.