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Photo of Crowd Outside Bank of Baroda Branch Goes Viral With False Claim

The crowd was present to deal with their accounts that were being moved to a different branch in UAE.

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The photograph of a Bank of Baroda (BoB) branch with a long queue of people outside it has gone viral on the internet.

The claim: Those sharing have claimed the BoB customers in in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are closing their accounts after the bank's CEO said the bank will continue lending to the Adani Group, after the company lost billions following the Hindenburg report.

The crowd was present to deal with their accounts that were being moved to a different branch in UAE.

An archive of the page can be found here.

(Source: Twitter/Screenshot)

(Archives of more such posts can be found here and here.)

The truth: While the viral image is from UAE and that the Al Ain branch of the bank is closing, it has nothing to do with the Adani-Hindenburg row. The bank said in a statement that the accounts in the Al Aim branch would be shifted to the Abu Dhabi branch with effect from 22 March.

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Context: The US-based short-seller Hindenburg Research had alleged that the Adani Group had committed fraud in a research report published on 24 January.

  • In the wake of the report, the conglomerate suffered losses of more that $100 billion.

  • Earlier in February, Sanjay Chadha, CEO and MD of Bank of Baroda, said that the bank was willing to lend additional funds to the Adani Group and added that he was not worried about the market volatility around Adani stocks.

How did we find that out: We conducted keyword search for Bank of Baroda's Al Ain branch shutting down and found a statement in a tweet on the bank's official Twitter handle.

  • The statement said that the decision to shut the Al Ain branch was made over a year ago, for commercial reasons.

  • The statement added that the branch was scheduled to shut on 22 March and those who wished to close their accounts had to do it before the same.

  • We also found a social media post by a Facebook user called Riz Qureshi, who shared a letter from the Chief Manager of BoB's Al Ain Branch, which corroborated the statements in the BoB press release.

Geolocating the viral image:

  • We looked up Bank of Baroda's Al Ain Branch and located on Google maps.

  • We found older images of the shop called VIP, which can be seen next to the bank, that confirm that the viral image is indeed from UAE.

The crowd was present to deal with their accounts that were being moved to a different branch in UAE.

A link to the location can be found here

(Photo: The Quint)

Conclusion: A viral image showing a crowd outside a BoB branch in UAE is going viral with a false claim around the Adani-Hindenburg row.

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