Video of Man Assaulting a Sadhu Shared With False Communal Spin
Khandwa SP Vivek Singh said that the accused was identified as Praveen Gaur and that he was arrested.
A video of a man assaulting and forcibly cutting the hair of an Aghori Sadhu at a salon is doing the rounds on social media, with many identifying the assailant as a Muslim.
Several people have shared the video to claim that a Muslim youth from Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh, committed the act, and have demanded that he be arrested.
However, we found that the incident, which occurred on 22 May, has been given a false communal spin. The accused was identified as Praveen Gaur.
Khandwa Superintendent of Police (SP) Vivek Singh said that Gaur, a hotelier, was arrested, but no FIR was registered in connection with the case as the ascetic, who was assaulted, could not be located.
The video is being shared with a claim in Hindi, which reads:
“खंडवा में एक मुस्लिम युवक ने एक अघोरी साधु महाराज की जटाए और दाढ़ी सारे आम काटी इस अपराधी को जल्द से जल्द पकड़ा जाए. इसे सख्त से सख्त हिंदू एक्ट में सजा मिले”
[Translation: In Khandwa, a Muslim youth shaved an aghori ascetic in full public view. This criminal should be caught as soon as possible. He should be punished under the strictest Hindu Act.]
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
Using relevant keywords, we looked for more information regarding the incident.
The search led us to a video report by Hindustan Times on YouTube that carried the viral claim and noted that the incident took place in Patajan village in Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh.
It identified the accused as Praveen Gaur, who reportedly dragged the ascetic to a barbershop after an argument broke out between the two on Sunday, 22 May.
News organisation NDTV also carried a report on the incident, noting that the police began investigating the incident on 23 May after the video went viral on social media.
In a video statement, Khandwa SP Vivek Singh said that the incident occurred in the Khalwa area. Singh said that the police had nabbed the accused and that he was currently in their custody.
He added that they were still looking for and trying to identify the ascetic from the video so they could register a formal complaint.
The Quint’s Madhya Pradesh reporter, Vishnukant Tiwari, confirmed that the accused was not from the Muslim community.
Evidently, a video of a man assaulting an ascetic before forcefully chopping his hair off is being shared to claim that the man belonged to the Muslim community.
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