Fact Check: Kumbh Mela buses passed off as migrant buses arranged by Priyanka Gandhi

An image of hundreds of buses standing in a row on a highway went viral on social media with the claim that these are the buses Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi arranged for migrants, but UP CM Yogi Adityanath denied permission for them to ply.

On May 16, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi had appealed to Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath to permit 1,000 buses her party has arranged to ferry migrant workers home. Later, in a video message, she had said the buses were waiting at the UP border.

Soon after her appeal, an image of hundreds of buses standing in a row on a highway went viral on social media with the claim that these are the buses Priyanka arranged for migrants, but Yogi denied permission for them to ply.

Several Facebook users posted the picture with a caption in Hindi that translates to, “Shameful. This is not a traffic jam. In Uttar Pradesh, Priyanka Gandhi arranged 1,000 buses to take migrant workers home, but Yogi ji has denied permission.”

India Today Anti Fake News War Room (AFWA) has found that the viral picture has nothing to do with Priyanka Gandhi or the migrant issue. The picture was taken at Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj last year when the Uttar Pradesh government created a Guinness World Record for the largest parade of 500 special buses.

Multiple users have shared the same content on Facebook. The archived version can be seen here.

With the help of reverse image search, we found that the picture was taken last year during Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh. The same picture was published on various news websites such as “Financial Express” and “The Quint” on February 28, 2019.

As per these news reports, the Prayagraj Mela Authority under the UP government made it to the Guinness World Record for the ‘largest parade of buses’. A total of 500 buses with the Kumbh logo were used to make the record. The buses covered a stretch of 3.2 km in the district. Earlier, Abu Dhabi held the record of running 390 buses in a parade.

Hence, it is clear that the image of buses used in the viral post is unrelated and old. These are not the buses the Congress arranged to ferry migrant workers from UP home.

However, two days after her appeal, the UP government on Monday, May 18, accepted Priyanka Gandhi’s request and permitted the buses to ply.

Claim

Viral picture shows 1,000 buses arranged by Priyanka Gandhi in Uttar Pradesh to bring migrants home.

Conclusion

The picture was taken at Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj last year, when the UP government created a Guinness World Record for the largest parade of 500 buses.


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