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FACT CHECK: Was Rajiv Gandhi’s statue brought down by the Left in Tripura in 2008?

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Photo showing men vandalising former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi is from Tripura, clicked during a protest in 2008.

The internet is amazing. Powerful. Extremely useful, no doubt. Social media platforms and instant messaging apps help people stay connected and share information but just like every human invention misused, these offerings are now used to spread false information, propagate a certain narrative and to a large extent, fuel hatred.

Since the day when Communist idol Vladimir Lenin’s statuewas brought down in Tripura’s Belonia, just two days after the announcement of Assembly election results in the state, there have been attacks on Dravidian icon Periyar’s statue in Tamil Nadu’s Vellore and on Jana Sangh leader Syama Prasad Mookerjee’s statue in South Kolkata.

Social media users were divided on whether or not bringing down statues, be it by the Right or the Left, is the right thing to do.

Meanwhile, there is false information propagated on social media platforms and instant messaging applications. Sample this – Dr Gaurav Pradhan, famous for his political predictions, and the founder of Swades Samvad, tweeted saying, “This is Shri Rajiv Gandhi statue in Tripura which was brought down by LEFT (sic) in the most humiliating manner in 2008,” sharing a photo that shows one man just about to hit Rajiv Gandhi’s statue with a hammer.

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