An image of stacks of fake Rs 2000 denomination currency notes in the custody of the police has been revived on social media with the false claim that the cash was recovered from a politician of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the poll-bound West Bengal.
The image dates back to November 2019, when the Telangana Police had busted an interstate gang for circulating fake notes from the Khammam district.
The image was shared widely on Facebook. User 'NS Mehra' had garnered over 1,700 likes and 1,500 shares at the time of writing this article on his post, captioned, "बंगाल में BJP के नेता के घर से बरामद रुपया".
(Translation: "Money recovered from BJP leader's house in Bengal")
Another user had garnered over 1,200 likes at the time of writing this article.
An archived version of a similar post on Facebook can be viewed here.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
A reverse image search on Yandex led us to a tweet by news agency ANI, dated 2 November 2019.
According to the news agency, the Khammam Police in Telangana had arrested five people for exchanging fake Rs 2,000 denomination currency notes at a 20 percent commission.
320 bundles of fake notes amounting up to Rs 6.4 crore were seized, which can be seen in the viral image as well.
Further, according to a report by Telangana Today, Commissioner of Police (CP) Tafseer Iqubal told the media that "the racket was being operated with Sathupalli town as its centre."
Shaik Madar was identified as the main accused, along with his wife Shaik Masthan Bee, their elder son Shaik Rameej and nephew Shaik Noushad. Driver Thota Hanumantha Rao and mediators Modem Saraiah and Gayam Venkata Narayana were also arrested in the case.
The image had earlier gone viral with the false claim that the counterfeit notes were recovered from a RSS supporter in Gujarat and was debunked by several fact-checking websites including The Quint.
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