A fake screenshot of a tweet had gone viral which claimed Kamala Harris had expressed shock at the ongoing farmers’ agitation in India.

Fact check Kamala Harriss tweet on farmers protests in India is fake
news Fact check Thursday, December 03, 2020 - 13:51

A screenshot purporting to show a tweet by US Vice-President Elect Kamala Harris admonishing the Indian government for suppressing protests by farmers against new farm laws, is fake. The screenshot is being shared in the backdrop of farmers from Punjab and Haryana marching to Delhi in protest against the central government's new farm laws.

The caption accompanying the fake tweet reads: US Vice President Kamala Harris's slogan for farmers' rights. (Punjabi caption: ਅਮਰੀਕਾ ਦੀ ਉਪ ਰਾਸ਼ਟਰਪਤੀ ਕਮਲਾ ਹੈਰਿਸ ਵੱਲੋਂ ਕਿਸਾਨਾਂ ਦੇ ਹੱਕ ਹਾਅ ਦਾ ਨਾਅਰਾ...) The text in the screenshot of the tweet reads: "We are shocked to see the Indian government's suppression of farmers protesting new laws which will endanger their livelihood. Instead of using water cannons and tear gas, the Indian government needs to engage in open dialogue with farmers." The tweet has over 8,000 retweets and 27,000 likes. 

BOOM also received the fake tweet on its WhatsApp helpline number.

Fact Check

BOOM found that the tweet screenshot is fake and Harris has not tweeted anything about the ongoing farmers' protest in India. BOOM checked the timelines of Kamala Harris personal account (@KamalaHarris) as well as her Senatorial account (@SenKamalaHarris) but found no tweets on the farmers' protests.

On Monday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed his concern about the protests and said that his government has reached out to the Indian government at multiple levels to "highlight their concerns". Trudeau's comment sparked a strong response from the Indian government who termed them as unwarranted.

Many Indian politicians and social media users also rebuked the Canadian government for commenting on India's "internal matters". Given her status as the US VP-elect, any tweet by Harris on the ongoing protests would similarly have been extensively covered by the media. However, we found no reports about Harris commenting on the protests.

A keyword search for the text of the tweet led us to this tweet by Canadian Member of Parliament Jack Harris.

We found similarities between Jack Harris' tweet and the fake Kamala Harris tweet. Even though the number of retweets and likes don't match, the two tweets have the same text and also have been tweeted out at the same time. Below is a screenshot comparison of the fake tweet (L) and Jack Harris' tweet (R).

This article was first published on BOOM and has been republished with permission. The original article can be found here