Vande Bharat mission was launched on May 7th to bring back all the stranded Indians in various countries back to India. Along with the flights, fake news in relation to this mission took off too. A post went viral on social media mid-May claiming that Qatar government cancelled Vande Bharat flight due to money related misunderstanding.
A post became viral on social media claiming that Qatar cancelled all Vande Bharat flights as they were under the impression that it is an evacuation mission and gave exemptions in airport charges, but later came to know that Air India was charging 700 riyals per passenger and hence cancelled all flights.
The following post is viral on Facebook.
This post was uploaded on May 12th by facebook user ‘Unofficial:Subramaniam Swamy Susuji’ and was shared 276 times.
Qatar govt was informed that #VandeBharath is an evacuation mission by Air India. As per this, Air India got exemptions in airport charges. But later Qatar came to know it isn't a free trip, but NRIs are paying 700 riyals, they cancelled the flight! https://t.co/fL5Tckcklo
— The Saudade Guy (@arunrajpaul) May 11, 2020
The following image was tweeted by a twitter handle named ‘The Saudade Guy’ on 11th May and has garnered over 1.9k retweets and 2.7k likes.
Various local media channel reported this.
The following video was uploaded by the Youtube channel of Mathrubhumi news, a Malayalam new channel. This video has over 187k views.
In the video description it is mentioned that Qatar denied landing of Air India flight due to miscommunication between the government of India and Qatar. In the caption it is written that aviation ministry said that passengers will travel for free due to which several relaxations were permitted.
The claim is false. Air India flight IX374 was cancelled by Qatar airport due to technical issues and not differences over landing charges.
A tweet was put out by the official twiiter handle of the Indian embassy, Doha about the cancellation of flights and these baseless rumours.
Unfortunately IX-374 scheduled for today from Doha to Thiruvananthapuram was cancelled for technical reasons. Being rescheduled for 12 May 2020. Passengers already booked for the flight to reconfirm tomorrow. Those with exit permit issues will not be cleared for boarding.
— India in Qatar (@IndEmbDoha) May 10, 2020
Another tweet was put up later regarding all the baseless rumors going viral on social media.
This was tweeted on 11th May. The flight was postponed. The following tweet is off the flight which was cancelled taking off for Thiruvanathpuram on May 12th.
IX 374 preparing for take off from Doha a short while ago for T’puram. It is now on the way to its destination. Wish the passengers a safe flight. @MEAIndia
@DrSJaishankar #VandeBharatMission pic.twitter.com/iPEdySiPQf
— India in Qatar (@IndEmbDoha) May 12, 2020
So the posts claiming that Qatar has cancelled all Vande Bharat flights is false in nature.
News18 published an article in which it is mentioned that the reason of postponing the flight was because of technical issues.
— India in Qatar (@IndEmbDoha) May 25, 2020
Hence the claim that Qatar cancelled Air India flight IX374 over airport charges is false. Also Qatar did not cancel all Vande Bharat flights as can be seen in the tweet above where the twitter handle of Indian embassy in Qatar tweeted about the flight schedule from Doha back to different places in India.
This fake news was also busted by Newschecker.