Over the last decade, much has already been written about Rahul Gandhi’s ‘Coming of Age’, which we also have covered in one of our earlier pieces so as to show how this opinion is being manufactured over the years. Well, not much could be said about whether the Congress president has actually grown into a matured politician or not. But, what has certainly emerged from his speeches is that he has embarked upon a lying journey over the last few years. All his baseless allegations, half-truths and lies on the Rafale deal have already been busted by us. However, this has not deterred Rahul Gandhi from cherry-picking the data and spinning the brazen lies even from the international reports to portray our nation in a bad light. He seems to be adamant about running the nation down with his baseless claims and preposterous tweets.
In the series are his tweets on October 15, 2018, quoting a report from a Hindi newspaper, saying that Government of India (Modi Government) has failed miserably in controlling widespread hunger in the country. He was essentially referring to the reported fall of India’s rank in the Global Hunger Index (GHI) in the year 2018.
Here is his tweet.
Here is the fact check on Global Hunger Index-2018
- India’s ranking has NOT slipped 48 places, that is, from rank 55 in 2014 to rank 103 in 2018.
- India’s rank was 55 out of 76 countries in 2014. Top performing 44 countries added in the year 2017 and 2018 were anyway above India and were not even listed in 2014.
- If these countries were listed in the rankings in 2014, then India’s ranking in 2014 would have been 99 out of 120 countries. Due to the addition of these 44 countries above India, India got ranked 100 in 2017 and ranked 103 in 2018.
- So, evidently, that means India’s actual ranking moved from 99 in 2014 to 103 in 2018.
- The same happened in 2017, wherein several media agencies showed an absolute wrong portrayal of facts – India’s actual ranking moved from 99 in 2014 to 100 in 2017.
- The True Picture has already covered this aspect in detail in our article, Global Hunger Index 2017 Sends Fake Propaganda Index Up.
In fact, India has actually improved the GHI score from 35.6 in 2008 to 31.1 in 2018, and it is not in the alarming zone now.
Therefore, the fall in India’s rank from 55 in 2014 to 103 in 2018 is a misleading claim. In fact, India has consistently progressed in its Global Health Index score as shown in the below graph taken from Global Hunger Index 2018 itself. The Red marked area in the graph depicts the improvement in the GHI score of India (the declining value of bars), on a scale where ‘0’ is the best performance, while ‘100’ denotes the worst performance. So, India’s GHI score has consistently increased, reaching 31.1 in 2018. This reflects an evident decline of hunger in India.
A Perspective on Hunger in India
Poverty and hunger have a strong correlation. Most of the people who suffer from hunger every day, are consequently malnourished, are the people who are extremely poor and do not have access to food.
In the above light, a Brookings’ study suggested that poverty in India is falling at a rapid pace – with about 44 people are coming out poverty every minute. India also shed the tag of having the largest poor population in the world. This effectively contradicts the argument that hunger in India is increasing. On the contrary, with more people coming out of poverty, a number of people suffering from hunger are also bound to go down.
Further, National Food Security Act (NFSA), which legally guarantees the access to food to all the vulnerable people in the country, has been implemented by the present government across the country covering all states and UTs, within a span of just two years after coming to power in 2014. Approximately 80 crore people of India have already been covered under the NFSA, and are getting wheat at Rs. 2 per kg. and rice at Rs. 3 per kg.
Thus, the Global Hunger Index 2018 should be quoted accurately and in the right context. India’s GHI score has improved which reflects a clear-cut decline in hunger. This is also in tune with the Brookings’ study and through the successful implementation of the NFSA Act.
So, the rank may not accurately give the true picture of India’s performance, due to the addition of 44 countries in the index since 2017. In fact, GHI itself clarifies in its report that “rankings cannot be accurately compared with rankings and index scores from the previous reports.”
But, Rahul Gandhi never spared an opportunity to shame the country. Earlier too in 2017, he has misquoted the same Global Hunger Index 2017. He tweeted the following.
But, as soon as the The True Picture came out with a fact check on this. Congress President was replied by many including the union ministers.
This recent cherry-picking of random data by Rahul Gandhi quoting an international report is not new and is similar to his series of lies and attempts to spread the fake news on Rafale deal.
He has misquoted a number of international reports. Some of such instances are listed as below:
Thomson Reuters Foundation survey on women
Rahul Gandhi used this report to call India as one of the most dangerous countries for women, worse than Saudi Arabia, Syria and Afghanistan.
Here are the facts of this survey:
- The survey was conducted covering only 548 “experts” on women’s issues from all over the world.
- There was no mention of the details about the chosen experts, and how they have become representative of the entire world’s population.
- The sample size was way too small for the survey.
- There was a clear-cut sampling bias in the survey. The survey had 43 Indians among 548 respondents, which is around 8% of the total respondents.
- The survey was just a perception-based poll and was not based on hard data.
We, in one of our articles, have explained how the Thomson Reuters survey was based on a flawed methodology.
Moreover, Maneka Gandhi, Minister for Women and Child Development has also rejected the report saying that “the results are not derived from any kind of data and are solely based on inherently subjective opinions.”
But, Rahul Gandhi was at it again. He said that India should be ashamed, based on a report using twisted facts as already explained above. He tweeted the following.
But here too, he was replied factually and caught defaming the nation over a ‘Survey’.
Oxfam Report on Income Inequality 2017
Congress President questioned Modi government over its ‘findings’. He questioned, “Why 1 per cent of India’s population gets 73 per cent of its wealth?”
Here is the fact check.
- Figures from the World’s Wealth and Income Database showed that during the UPA government, that is between 2000 and 2013 in India, the income of the top 1% and 10% steadily rose to unprecedented levels, while that of the middle 40% and bottom 50% constantly declined.
- A Credit Suisse report in 2016 showed that the top 1% had 58%, and the top 10% had 80% of the wealth share, however, in 2017, the same fell to the top 1% having 45% and the top 10% having 73% of the wealth share in India.
From the above facts, it can be concluded that income inequality in the country has reduced between 2016 and 2017, further implying that the gap between rich and poor has declined under the Modi government.
Women Safety in India
Rahul Gandhi, as recently as two months back on his tour in Germany, said that “It’s cultural. It’s about how the Indian male views the Indian woman”. This just shows how he views India, its people and its culture.
It is true that India is still improving in many areas of women empowerment. However, this outright stereotyping of his nation and defaming it in front of international audiences is certainly unwelcome for someone who seeks to lead the country.
Factually speaking, India is nowhere among the top nations in reported rapes as multiple data sources indicate.
From the above discussion, it is quite evident that Congress president Rahul Gandhi in his attempts to somehow malign Prime Minister Narendra Modi, often ends up defaming his own nation and that too on the basis of twisted facts and reports lacking in rigour.