FACT CHECK: Did The New York Times Report That The Largest Political Rally In History Recently Occurred In India?

Anna Mock | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows an article from The New York Times that claims the largest political rally in history recently occurred in India. 

Verdict: False 

The image is digitally fabricated. The New York Times confirmed in a tweet that it did not publish such a story.

Fact Check: 

The Facebook image allegedly features a screen grab of an April 2 article from The New York Times that claims the Indian political party Aam Aadmi recently broke a record for hosting the largest political rally in history. “Nearly 25 crores people attended Arvind Kejriwal’s rally in Gujarat after his Landslide win in Punjab Election,” reads the article’s subheadline.

A crore is an Indian unit of measurement used to signify 10 million, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. The alleged article is therefore suggesting that 250 million people attended the rally in question.

The article is digitally fabricated. No such report appears on The New York Times’ website or on the news outlet’s verified social media accounts. There are likewise no other credible news reports suggesting a rally of that magnitude was recently held in India. 

A rally was held in the city of Ahmedabad, India for the party earlier in April, according to Indian Express. However, there is no indication in the article that the crowd size was 250 million or near that figure. (RELATED: Did Indian Politician Rahul Gandhi Say That Pakistan Can Be ‘Bought’ For Less Than $1 Billion?)

The New York Times confirmed the viral image was fake in an April 2 tweet. “This screenshot, which is circulating on social media, is a mocked-up image,” reads the tweet. “The New York Times did not write or publish this story.” The tweet includes a link to the outlet’s reporting on events in India. 

This is not the first time a fake New York Times article about Indian politics has circulated online. Earlier this year, Check Your Fact debunked a viral image that allegedly showed an article from the outlet that referred to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the “world’s most loved and most powerful leader.”

Anna Mock

Fact Check Reporter

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