An image of Mohan Bhagwat, chief of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) sitting with Asaduddin Owaisi, President of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) is viral on social media. In the image, Bhagwat can be seen greeting Union MoS for Parliamentary Affairs Arjun Ram Meghwal and Owaisi sitting beside him on the sofa.
The claim along with the image is being made that a secret agreement has been made between the two ahead of the Uttar Pradesh assembly election. Election Commission has announced that the assembly election in Uttar Pradesh will be conducted in 7 phases from 10 February 2022 to 7 March 2022 and results will be declared on 10 March 2022.
However, Facto News found that the viral image is morphed.
A Twitter user shared the morphed image with a caption that reads: “मोहन भागवत के यहां हैदराबादी खिचड़ी पकाने पहुंचे मुस्लिम रहनुमा असर उद्दीन ओवेसी” (Translation: Muslim leader Asad Uddin Owaisi reached Mohan Bhagwat’s place to cook Hyderabadi khichdi)
Shrikant Shinde, a Facebook user also shared the morphed image with the same caption.
On conducting a reverse google image search of the viral image, we came across an article of The Times of India published on 22 December 2021. The article carries the viral image, however, the man sitting beside him is Mulayam Singh Yadav and not Asaduddin Owaisi.
According to the article, the image is from an event organised at the residence of Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and was first shared by Arjun Ram Meghwal. The article also says that the image had led to a war of words between the Congress and Samajwadi Party.
In an interview with The Lallantop, Akhilesh Yadav told, “The image of Mulayam Singh Yadav with Mohan Bhagwat is from a marriage function which was attended by several other leaders. NCP leader Sharad Pawar was also present at the function.”
A comparison of the real photo and the viral photo for further clarification.
Therefore, it is evident that the image of Bhagwat sitting with Owaisi is morphed to mislead people ahead of the UP assembly election.