Massive protests against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) have been taking places across the nation ever since the Modi government passed the legislation in the parliament.
As a consequence of that, supporters of CAA have resorted to spreading misinformation to counter the dissenters.
Former Member of Parliament, Paresh Rawal had tweeted on December 21, “Myanmar to India- 1769 km, Myanmar to China.- 2km. But, Why the Rohingyas want to come to India? and not China? Because unlike India, there are no seculars, no intellectuals, no anti-nationals, no in China, who support refugees Rohingyas.” The post was retweeted over 19000 times.
….Myanmar to India- 1769 kms
….Myanmar to China.- 2km
Why the Rohingyas want to come to India?
Because Unlike India,
there are no seculars
no anti nationals no
in China, who support refugees
— Paresh Rawal (@SirPareshRawal) December 21, 2019
A similar post with an image was tweeted by Mahesh Vikram Hegde, Founder of Postcard News, on December 17.
Myanmar to India- 1769 kms
Myanmar to China.- 2km
Why the Rohingyas want to come to India and not China?
Because Unlike India,
no anti nationals
no congress in China,
who support Rohingyas pic.twitter.com/UKtbly3zqs
— Mahesh Vikram Hegde (@mvmeet) December 17, 2019
The tweet is being shared by users on Facebook and Twitter extensively.
A Facebook user, Ajesh Nagar, wrote on his timeline, “Rohingyas travelled 1770 km to enter India, and not China which is 2km away because in China they get battered by shoes, whereas in India they get a warm reception by the politicians.”
रोहिंग्या 1770 km भारत आ गये पर 2km चीन नहीं गये क्योंकि वहाँ जूते पड़ते है यहाँ आरती उतारी जाती है नेताओ द्वारा ।* ढोल में पोल *
Interestingly, the distributors of misinformation didn’t even consider mentioning the North-Eastern region in their map, which is the nearest area to Myanmar.
Rohingyas are ethnic Muslim minority community residing in the Rakhine state — which is situated at the west coast of Myanmar.
Due to persecution, they fled to neighbouring countries to seek shelter.
The data released by the Home Ministry shows that the total length of the border between India and Myanmar is 1,643 km. Myanmar shares its border with Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram and Manipur.
So, if Rohingyas had to take a short route to reach India, the distance that they would’ve to cover to reach the nearest village, Lungpuk which is situated in Mizoram, from Thawinchaung in Rakhine — would be 178.59 km.
Whereas, to reach China, they would’ve to cover a distance of 750.27 km.
Also, crossing the borders between India and Myanmar is regulated through a Land Border Agreement, that was approved by the Union government in 2018.
Therefore, Paresh Rawal and others’ claim that the distance between India and Myanmar is 1769 km and the distance between China and Myanmar is 2 km is false and misleading.
Although, Paresh Rawal later clarified, “Don’t find the fault with the postal stamp (geography etc) but read the message/ meaning!” yet, it’s expected from a former Lok Sabha MP to check the facts before posting such tweets.
Mahesh Vikram Hegde has been arrested before for spreading fake news.
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