Last week, India’s first driver-less and fastest train, the Vande Bharat Express hit the tracks. To highlight this indigenously built train’s speed, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had posted a video of the train with the caption, “It’s a bird…It’s a plane…Watch India’s first semi-high speed train built under ‘Make in India’ initiative, Vande Bharat Express zooming past at lightening speed.”
It’s a bird…It’s a plane…Watch India’s first semi-high speed train built under ‘Make in India’ initiative, Vande Bharat Express zooming past at lightening speed. pic.twitter.com/KbbaojAdjO
— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) February 10, 2019
The video which shows the Vande Bharat Express zoom past a station was posted on Goyal’s official Facebook and Twitter accounts. The video was also shared by prominent personalities like National General Secretary of BJP, Ram Madhav. In fact, news outlets like Republic TV and Financial Express also published articles on the same.
A delight to see d world class train made in India. Kudos to GoI n specially to Indian Railways https://t.co/C8eslwzUnu
— Ram Madhav (@rammadhavbjp) February 10, 2019
However, just after the videos were posted, some comments on the posts suggested that the video is doctored and that it has been sped up which makes it seem as if the train is lightning fast.
The video was sped up
The fact-checking website AltNews conducted a search where they found that a YouTube channel named “The Rail Mail”, which caters to train enthusiasts had uploaded the original video on December 20, 2018. The Youtube channel also has a Facebook page and one of the commentators who contented Goyal’s claims is the admin of the page.
A side by side comparison of both the videos clearly shows that Goyal’s version has been sped up. The original video was shot at Asaoti railway station in Haryana. The video also has a trademark watermark which shows that the video belonged to the commentator.
AltNews reported that the doctored video has been making the rounds on the internet since the end of January. Reportedly, Piyush Goyal has been previously found to be guilty of sharing misleading posts and images on social media.
Creating or sharing fake news is never justified. We have a responsibility to verify everything that we post on the internet. To ensure that our national debate is healthy and well-informed, each and every one of us has a responsibility of treating what we read with a pinch of salt, a spoonful of doubt, and a flood of research.