Ahead of the West Bengal elections scheduled to be held between March 27 to April 29, 2021, a newspaper clip image is going viral. The newspaper headline says, "66 fake EVMs seized from the house of a BJP leader." While the headline is clearly visible, the newspaper clipping texts are not clear in the viral image.
The newspaper clipping is viral with a description to portray that the news of '66 fake EVMs seized from the house of a BJP leader' is of West Bengal.' The image is shared with the caption, "Complete preparation for the formation of government in Bengal."
बंगाल में सरकार बनाने की पूरी तैयारी शुरू हो गई है 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂Posted by Rahul Poonia on Friday, 12 March 2021
The image is viral on Facebook.
Twitter users are also sharing the newspaper clipping.
बंगाल में सरकार बनाने की पूरी तैयारी शुरू हो गई है— 𝓐𝓡𝓕𝓐𝓣✋🏻 🇮🇳 (@Iamarfat9) March 13, 2021
The news of 66 fake EVM seized from a BJP leader house is from West Bengal.
The Logical Indian Fact Check team searched on google with the newspaper clip's title and found that a verified Twitter handle, Amit Sharma, had tweeted the same newspaper clipping in 2018. He had tweeted the image with the caption, "66 fake EVMs seized from BJP leader's house. On EVM, press any button, the vote goes to BJP, EVM machines found in BJP leader's house. The BJP is losing the 2019 election, so it can remove the name of voters or tamper with the EVM - these are two ways through which it can win the election". Hence, the newspaper clipping is old.
"भाजपा नेता के घर से 66 नकली EVM जब्त"— Amit Mishra (@Amitjanhit) December 9, 2018
EVM में कोई बटन दबाओ वोट बीजेपी को जाती है, EVM की मशीन बीजेपी नेता के घर से मिलती है।
बीजेपी 2019 का चुनाव हार रही है इसलिए वोटरो के नाम कटवा रही है या EVM में गड़बड़ी कर रही है यह दो तरीके से वह चुनाव जीत सकती है। pic.twitter.com/e10lWOuxTQ
The image of the newspaper clipping is clear in the Tweet done by Amit Sharma. The article says, "Police seized 66 fake EVMs from BJP leaders residence from Saketnagar." The clipping also says that the report is from Beawar in Rajasthan's Ajmer district.
On searching with the keywords, 'Police seized 66 EVM from BJP leaders residence, Rajasthan', we found an article published on December 4, 2018, by Patrika. According to the article, 66 "symbolic EVM promotional material" were seized from the BJP leaders house. The name and election symbol of the Independent candidate from Jaitaran, Surendra Goyal, was mentioned in the promotional material.
We checked on the election commission's website and found that Surendra Goyal was contesting as an independent candidate from Jaitran in Rajasthan State Assembly Elections, 2018.
According to Navbharat Times, Goyal was earlier a Cabinet Minister in Rajasthan when BJP leader Vasundhra Raje was the Chief Minister. Later in 2018, Goyal was denied a party ticket, after which he resigned from BJP and fought as an independent candidate from Jaitaran. Hence, a news story from Rajasthan Assembly Elections 2018 is being shared with a false context of it being related to West Bengal state elections in 2021.
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