By: Rahul Adhikari
May 16 2023
The clip dates back to February 2022 and reportedly shows vote tampering in Kolkata during local body polls.
The Congress defeated the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the 2023 Karnataka elections by winning 135 seats out of 224 seats. Following the election results, several people on social media alleged that the polls were rigged.
Users shared a video of a polling booth, claiming that people had tampered with votes. The video shows a polling agent seated at a desk with electoral rolls, while a man in a striped t-shirt standing near an electronic voting machine (EVM) is allegedly stopping voters and casting ballots on their behalf. The caption of one post sharing this video, translated from Hindi, read, "Congratulations to the BJP worker who secretly performed his duty and made this video go viral. Please send this video to Modi ji, Amit Shah ji, and the Defense Minister. The video exposes the audacity of bogus voting at the polling booth in Karnataka. Will there be an investigation and strict action taken, asks India."
The post suggests that BJP party workers captured the video and opposition parties were allegedly involved in the misconduct at the polling booth. The viral post garnered over 84,000 views and 328 likes.
A reverse image search revealed that the viral claim is false. The video surfaced in 2022 during the Dum Dum municipal election in Kolkata, allegedly from the Lakeview School of Ward 33. Polls were held for 108 municipalities across West Bengal on February 27, 2022. The ruling party, Trinamool Congress (TMC), swept the polls by winning 102 municipalities. On election day, multiple incidents of unrest were reported while opposition parties BJP and Congress alleged that TMC rigged the elections.
BJP leader Agnimitra Paul shared the viral video first, alleging that TMC has rigged the election. The same video was shared from BJP Bengal’s Twitter account as well.
The Bengali news channel TV9 Bangla published the video on their YouTube channel on February 27, 2022, claiming that the incident happened in booth No. 108 of Ward No. 33 of South Dumdum, where "the voter did not vote, the agent voted."
News organization Editorji Bangla also published the video, reporting that opposition leaders alleged that the video shows vote rigging during the South Dum Dum municipality polls.
While no clarification was issued in Bengal about this video, it is evident that the video dates back to at least 2022 and does not show poll rigging in the Karnataka election.
This clip had circulated during the 2022 Gujarat Assembly elections, claiming to show votes being cast illegally in Surat's Varaccha area. Logically Facts had debunked it then.
An old video, which has existed on the internet since at least February 2022 is being shared as vote tampering during the recently concluded Karnataka assembly election. However, it clearly predates the Karnataka polls. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.