In the wake of ongoing 2022 elections in Uttar Pradesh, a social media post accompanying an image of an envelope with Samajwadi Party (SP) symbol ‘cycle’ with an Rs. 500 note in it is being widely shared across social media platforms. The post alludes to the SP bribing voters with cash ahead of the elections, the description accompanying the image in Hindi translates to ‘Don’t sell your children’s future by holding this envelope. Hindus, don’t make a deal by killing their conscience’. Through this article, let’s fact-check the claim made in the post.
Claim: Image of an envelope with cash and Samajwadi Party symbol being used to bribe voters with cash ahead of the 2022 UP elections.
Fact: The same image of an envelope is available on internet at least since 2017. A twitter user shared the same image back in 2017 alleging SP of bribing voters with cash. Although we could not independently verify the context and further details related to the envelope, the date of the old tweet suggests that it has nothing to do with the ongoing 2022 UP elections. Hence the claim made in the post is MISLEADING.
The same image of an envelope is available on the internet at least since 2017. Reverse image search of the photo in the post led us to the same image shared through a tweet back in 2017.
The tweet also shared an image of the other side of the envelope. The other side contains the image of Samajwadi Party leader Vijay Bahadur Yadav. Also, the date and constituency details like ‘04 March 2017’ and ‘Gorakhpur rural assembly constituency’ are printed on the ennvelope.
Although we could not independently verify the context and further details related to the envelope, the available evidence suggests that this has nothing to do with the current elections. Further, we could not find any news reports of UP politicians belonging to the SP distributing money in envelopes as claimed in the post.
To sum it up, an old image of an envelope with cash & the Samajwadi party symbol is shared is being shared linking it to the ongoing 2022 UP elections.