Edited cartoon against Congress falsely attributed to American cartoonist Ben Garrison

By: Rahul Adhikari
May 28 2024

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Edited cartoon against Congress falsely attributed to American cartoonist Ben Garrison

A social media post claims Ben Garrison published cartoon targetting the Congress party. (Source: X/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict Fake

The original cartoon, created in 2015 by Indian cartoonist Amal Medhi, poked fun at the government's 'Make in India' initiative.

Claim ID 64f783f1

What is the claim?

An image circulating online claims that American cartoonist Ben Garrison created a political cartoon targetting India's main Opposition party, the Indian National Congress (INC). 

The viral cartoon shows a cow, emblazoned with the symbol of the Congress party, consuming a leaf shaped like the Indian map and defecating into a bucket, representing what's left for the Indian people. It further portrays the cow's milk being collected in a bucket, depicting the Gandhi family. A text layer on the image reads, "American cartoonist Ben Garrison's depiction of the state of India. The best way to show how congress ruled India." 

Sharing the image on X (formerly Twitter), one user wrote, “Nehru to Rahul Rule couldn't have been depicted better.” An archived version of the post can be accessed here

A screenshot of the viral post. (Source: X/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the claim is false. Garrison did not create this cartoon. It has been manipulated and the original version was created by Indian cartoonist Amal Medhi in 2015, which poked fun at the government's 'Make in India' initiative. 

Is Garrison the creator of the cartoon?

We reviewed the comment section of the viral post and found several users claiming that the image had been edited and was not created by Garrison. 

Taking a cue from this, we found that Garrison had issued a clarification in 2017 (archived here) stating that he had not create any cartoons on Indian politics. He wrote, "No- I have never drawn any cartoons on India politics- there are some cartoons with my sig going around- Not mine (sic)." 

A screenshot of the clarification post by Ben Garrison. (Source: X/Screenshot)

We also checked Garrison’s website, which hosts his cartoons, and were unable to find the viral image there.

Then who?

We conducted a reverse image search on the viral image and found that the cartoon has been circulating on social media for a long time. 

In one such post from 2021, we found a comment from a user (archived here) claiming that the viral image is doctored. According to the user, the original cartoon was shared by Indian cartoonist Amal Medhi in 2015 and took a jibe at the government. The user also shared a screenshot of a Facebook post by Medhi from September 2015, purportedly showing the original version of the cartoon, where we were able to spot Medhi’s signature.


The purported post by Amal Medhi sharing his cartoon. (Source: X/Screenshot)

We found that Medhi is an Indian cartoonist based in Assam. Logically Facts reached out to Medhi for his comments and was told, “Yes, I created the cartoon in 2015. The image was published on my Facebook page. I have clarified earlier that my cartoon was photoshopped. I did not create the viral cartoon against the Congress party.” 

He also sent us a screenshot of the cartoon along with a Facebook link of his post. While the link itself is not accessible, the preview shows the original cartoon.

The screenshot of the post sent by Amal Medhi. (Source: Amal Medhi)

As seen above, the original cartoon shows a cow, emblazoned with the words “Make In India”, not the Congress’ symbol.

Comparison between the altered cartoon and the original cartoon. (Source: X/Amal Medhi/Modified by Logically Facts)

The verdict

A manipulated version of a cartoon has been circulated as American cartoonist Ben Garrison’s work hitting out at the Congress party. The original cartoon was a critique of the “Make in India” initiative, not Congress, and it was created by Indian cartoonist Amal Medhi.

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