PM Modi quotes a satirical news in Parliament to attack Omar Abdullah

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While addressing the Lok Sabha on February 6, 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cited an article from satire website Faking News to attribute a fake quote to Omar Abdullah on the abrogation of Article 370. According to Modi, Abdullah had said that the abrogation of Article 370 will bring an earthquake, that will separate Kashmir from India.

Prime minister Narendra Modi addressed the Lok Sabha in an over hour-long speech on February 6. Amidst the attacks on Congress and the Left, discussions on the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the protests opposing the legislation, the PM also spoke about the abrogation of provisions of Article 370.

During his address, PM Modi attributed the following quote to former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir Omar Abdullah:  (The abrogation of Article 370 would bring a massive earthquake that it will divide Kashmir from India.)” Abdullah has been under house arrest for the past six months.

The portion of his address where he accredits the statement to Abdullah can be watched on PMO India’s Youtube channel.

It would be amusing were it not worrisome that the prime minister quoted an article from a satirical website ‘Faking News’ in the Parliament. The website had published the exact quote on May 28, 2014.

A quick Google search throws up no news reports where Abdullah has been quoted making the statement quoted by PM Modi. Furthermore, an advanced search on Twitter in both English and Hindi using keywords from the PM’s claim throws up references exclusively to the Faking News’ article and nothing else. It is unclear why and how the prime minister quoted a six-year-old satirical piece as genuine news in the Parliament.

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