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A screenshot of an alleged BBC news report featuring Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is taking viral rounds in the social media. The screenshot closely resembles the website layout of the BBC News. The particular alleged news report is from 11 January 2016 and was headlined – “Rahul Gandhi voted 3rd most trustworthy political leader in the world – Poll”. “An opinion poll conducted by WIN/Gallup International has rated Rahul Gandhi as the 3rd most “trustworthy” political leader after US President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi shares the 69th position in the poll ratings with Chinese President Xi Jinping.”, read the lead of the viral news report. The viral screenshot mentioned that the BBC article, was published on 11 January 2016.
The claim has been taking rounds on social media early since 2016. Multiple accounts on Facebook shared the false information of Rahul Gandhi becoming the third most trustworthy political leader as per polls conducted by WIN/Gallup International.
A Twitter user then shared the screenshot and claimed that Rahul Gandhi was not only recognized on a National level, but also globally. The tweet was captioned, “Not only in India even in World. Rahul Gandhi recognized as a trustworthy leader, So India needs Rahul for developed India.”
Not only in India even in world. Rahul Gandhi recognised as a trustworthy leader, So India needs Rahul for developed India. #IndiaMaangeRahul @WhoNeerajKumar @RAMCHAN13198642 @SavitaSikarwar @AakashS19706320 @inc_alok @Alok_Jha_inc @NishaMerin @psiubu @Rajesh15183 @SamvediVed pic.twitter.com/HI3aFTQcCv
— Kanhaiya singh (@Kanhaiya_singh2) July 10, 2021
Later, on 27 July 2021, the particular post was shared again on Twitter with the caption “Rahul Gandhi – The most trustworthy political leader. Do feel proud to be a part of @INCIndia. My#Rahul_THE_leader. On the very same day, another post was shared on Twitter that had a bitter tone to it. The post aimed at taking a dig at the Bhartiya Janata Party and it’s supporters asking them to get burnol from Pakistan, if it’s over. All an indication of jealousy that might arouse in the minds of BJP supporters after reading the news of Rahul Gandhi as the third most trustworthy political leader.
"Rahul Gandhi — the most trustworthy political leader in the world."
Do feel proud to be a part of the @INCIndia
— Shahwez Hasan (@shahwez_hasan) June 27, 2021
— Anchan_Shaila 🇮🇳 🔱 (@Congress_Army) June 27, 2021
There is no such news on BBC.
With reference to the date mentioned in the viral post, the keywords in the title were used to search Google within selected timeline of 11 January 2016 to 13 January 2016. The results had no mentions of the particular article by BBC that voted Rahul Gandhi as the third most trustworthy political leader in the world.
The website of BBC was also searched to find the particular false post from 2016. However, no results were yeilded.
If the viral post is closely examined, the Feature and Analysis column shows two articles namely The lost boy and Japan’s parenting debate and Looking into the massacres of Indonesia’s past. The articles shown in this snippet was published by BBC in June 2016. Besides, there’s also few stories under the section ‘Top Stories’. The same text is available on BBC’s website, with the same text but different headlines.
There’s a start contrast between the viral post and the articles on the BBC website that was published on 11 January 2016. The format used to write the date, month and year is different in both.
Again, the Gallup International Association (GIA), published annual reports in 2017 and 2018 wherein the organization conducted a survey and asked the audience to -‘indicate whether you have a very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable opinion of each of the following world leaders?’
The poll results however didn’t feature Rahul Gandhi in any of it’s reports. Thus, it is evident that a morphed screenshot of a BBC article was disseminated to falsely claim that Rahul Gandhi has been voted as the third most trust-worthy political leader in the world.