A message going viral on messaging platforms claims that 58% of the employees of the US’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration are Indian. The message also claimed that the Chief Executive Officer of several major international companies are Indian.

The claim has been posted by several Twitter users, a screenshot of this tweet has been shared widely on WhatsApp and the text has been posted by many users on Facebook.

What NASA says

However, the claim that Indians make up 58% NASA staff is patently false. According to NASA’sData and Analytics Unit of the agency, Asian Americans (which includes Indians) and Pacific Islander account for merely 8% of the organisation’s workforce.

“NASA employs nearly 17,000 people with diverse backgrounds,” the organisation’s website says. “Seventy two percent of NASA employees are White or Caucasian, 12% are Black or African American, 7% are Asian American or Pacific Islander, 8% are Hispanic or Latino; 1% are American Indian or Alaska Native, and less than 1% are more than one race.”

According to the “NASA Model Equal Employment Opportunity Agency Plan and Accomplishment Report”, the percentage of Asian American or Pacific Islander or AAPI has risen steadily from 4.5% of the total workforce in 1996 to 7.4% in 2016. However, it is still nowhere close to 58%. Moreover, it may be noted that the term “Asian American” includes several Asian ethnicities, not only Indian. Thus, the proportion of Indian employees to the total number is likely to be lower than the figure provided in this AAPI category.

As an agency of the United States government, NASA’s employment policy categorically states that US citizens will be hired and exceptions to this rule have been rare.

The second part of this social media message is also economical with the truth: the CEOs of the companies listed are of Indian origin, and not Indian citizens. Google CEO Sundar Pichai is an American citizen; Rajeev Suri, the CEO of Nokia, is from Singapore; CEO of Adobe, Shantanu Narayen is an American citizen; Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella too is an American citizen.

Alt News could not ascertain what “Amazon’s BOD” means. The CEO of Amazon is Jeff Bezos, an American. Alt News could not ascertain the nationality of MasterCard CEO Ajaypal Singh Banga.

This article first appeared on Alt News.