What is the cause of an abundant amount of untrue information against Palestine originating from India?

There is a prevalence of false information surrounding the conflict between Israel and Hamas on social media. However, in the online chaos, a noteworthy observation is that many of the accounts propagating these misleading narratives are predominantly from India.
ADVERTISEMENTA man being transported on a stretcher, his body concealed by a white blanket, is depicted in a video. Suddenly, sirens begin wailing and the individuals carrying the stretcher flee. After a brief period, the man emerges from the body bag and escapes.”Observe how Islamists construct stories. A deceased boy suddenly becomes alive! As the sirens commence, the fabricated deceased body also rises and starts running,” shared a user under the pseudonym X.Other Indian accounts dishonestly asserted that Gazans are simulating injuries and fatalities to elicit sympathy from the West. This video, along with its accompanying caption, has been widely shared on social media by Indian accounts. However, through conducting a reverse image search, the clip can be traced back to an Arabic news channel. The original video was posted in 2020 and purportedly filmed in Jordan.According to BOOM, an Indian fact-checking site, numerous Indian X users have been identified as spearheading this campaign of anti-Palestine propaganda.These so-called ‘disinfluencers’, or influencers who disseminate disinformation, have predominantly targeted Palestinians online while expressing their backing for Israel. Tensions between Hindus and Muslims in IndiaBut the fundamental question arises: why would these Indian accounts propagate disinformation? “We are approaching the electoral season in India. National elections are looming next year with some local elections on the horizon,” elucidated Nicolas Blarel, an expert in Indian politics and an associate professor of International relations at Leiden University.”This is evidently being weaponized for mobilization. There are tensions in India between Hindus and Muslims that frequently escalate as elections draw near.”A report by Logically Facts, an organization specializing in monitoring misinformation, also elucidates that this disinformation campaign is occurring in the lead-up to the Indian elections, scheduled to take place in the spring of 2024.Anti-Muslim sentiment has been on the ascent in India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his governing Bharatiya Janata Party (BPJ) ascended to power in 2014. Accusations of stigmatizing Muslims are frequently directed at the BJP, which staunchly opposes its pro-Palestine counterpart, the Congress.A report published in September by Hindutva Watch, a Washington-based group monitoring attacks on minorities, documented 255 instances of hate speech incidents targeting Muslims in the first half of 2023. Overwhelmingly, 80% of these incidents occurred in states and union territories governed by the BJP.Moreover, Nicolas Blarel has observed that India’s interest in Israel has grown over the past few decades.”Supporters of the BJP perceive that they encounter similar threats to Israel in terms of terrorism,” he stated.ADVERTISEMENTThe country has been subjected to attacks by what it alleges are state-backed armed groups in Pakistan. Both have engaged in a series of conflicts since 1947, primarily over the Kashmir region, which both nations lay claim to.While platforms like Meta have been reevaluating their strategies for combating hate speech and disinformation, X (formerly Twitter) has lagged behind. Last month, the European Union initiated an inquiry into X to ascertain if the platform failed to comply with new EU regulations by allowing explicit illegal content and disinformation linked to Hamas’ assault on Israel to proliferate.If found culpable, X could potentially face fines amounting to 6% of its worldwide revenue.ADVERTISEMENT

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