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Fact Checker: Old photos of RSS workers helping in relief ops shared as fresh image post Cyclone Fani in Odisha

Claim: Recent image of RSS workers helping in relief work in Odisha in the aftermath of Cyclone Fani.

Fact: The images though, authentic, are not recent and date back to 2017 and 2018 when RSS karyakartas helped in the relief work post Cyclone Titli in Odisha and Cyclone Hudhud in Andhra Pradesh.

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Multiple images of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) workers helping in relief work in the aftermath of Cyclone Fani in Odisha are being circulated on social media. Shivprakash, the National Joint General Secretary Organisation of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), on 4 May, tweeted out two images that showed RSS workers lifting uprooted trees. Many other RSS workers and BJP supporters also shared similar images on various social media platforms.

However, on doing a reverse image search it was revealed that some of the images dated back to 2017. The website Vishwa Samvad Kendra Bharat, which is categorised as an independent organisation, which identifies itself as part of the media business, news and information, had used the image and headlined the article dated 17 October, 2014 as 'Laudable initiative by RSS and others'. The relief ops were in the aftermath of Cyclone Hudhud and its impact on Visakhapatnam.

Meanwhile, confusion grew as the Assam unit of Vishwa Samvad Kendra Bharat on 4 May tweeted a few images claiming to be from the site of Cyclone Fani relief work, which also included the image used by the website in its 2014 article.

Several other images, that are being shared on social media could be traced back to relief ops in the aftermath of Cyclone Titli in 2018 which massively affected Andhra Pradesh. This was confirmed by AltNews which found similar images on tnews.co.th and organiser.org — claiming that the images were shot during devastation caused in Andhra Pradesh after it was shit by the 2018 cyclone.

Other publications like SM Hoaxslayer, too, debunked the claim that the images were from Cyclone Fani relief work and posted old tweets and social media posts to verify their authenticity and earlier instances of publication. According to AltNews, a similar pattern of fake images being shared on social media was observed during devastating Kerala floods in 2018.

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Updated Date: May 08, 2019 15:38:32 IST