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Edited Clip Viral to Claim PM, Ministers Called For 'Removal of Sikhs From Army'

The video is of a CCS meeting held by the PM after CDS Rawat died in an air crash on 8 December.

Updated
WebQoof
3 min read
Edited Clip Viral to Claim PM, Ministers Called For 'Removal of Sikhs From Army'
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A 30-second edited video, which shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi chairing a meeting with Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval is being shared to claim that the ministers called for "removal of Sikhs from the Army".

This clip shows the ministers seated, while someone can be heard saying, "remove all Punjabi soldiers, Generals from top to bottom and I tell you things will improve".

This comes after Modi's convoy was stranded enroute National Martyrs' Memorial in Punjab's Hussainiwala on 5 January.

However, we found that the video has been tampered with and a different audio has been added to it.

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  • The video is from 8 December, when PM Modi chaired the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) meeting in Delhi, after India's first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Bipin Rawat and his wife died in a helicopter crash.

  • While the audio is that of an undated conversation which purportedly happened on a right-wing Clubhouse room, the audio of which has now gone viral.

Further, Delhi Police has registered a case under Section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion) and an investigation is underway.

CLAIM

The video which was shared by an account in the name of one 'Eshal Kaur' claimed that the top ministers discussed removed of "Sikhs from the Army".

The video had garnered over 47,000 views at the time of writing this article.

An archived version of the tweet can be seen here.

(Source: Twitter/SCreenshot)

The video has been shared by several other users and an archived version can be viewed here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Interestingly, all these accounts are in the names of Sikh women, which were created between October-November 2021 and have a fairly low following.

WHAT WE FOUND

We found that the audio has been added to a video of the prime minister chairing a Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) meeting in Delhi. Let's take a look at the video and audio one-by-one.

WHERE IS THE VIDEO FROM?

We conducted a keyword search on Google using 'PM Modi chairs meeting defence minister' and came across the video on the website of The Times of India published on 8 December.

It was mentioned that the video was from the meeting chaired by Modi after the Indian Airforce helicopter, carrying CDS Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika Rawat and 12 other personnel, crashed in Tamil Nadu's Nilgiris district.

Home Minister Shah, External Affairs Minister Jaishankar, NSA Doval, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman were in attendance.

Since the video was attributed to news agency ANI, we looked for the footage on ANI's website and found the same video uploaded on their website on the same date.

Several other news channels carried the video and no such audio can be heard in that.

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WHAT ABOUT THE AUDIO THEN?

The audio in which a person can be heard speaking against the Sikhs in the India Army is that of conversation which purportedly happened on Clubhouse.

Several people shared a screen recording of the conversation on Twitter. It was first uploaded on 5 January by a Twitter user. (Note: We have refrained from using the audio embed in our story, however an archived version of the tweet can be seen here.)

OpIndia's (a right wing outlet which is notorious for peddling misinformation) Nupur Sharma, who can also be seen in the screenshot of the Clubhouse discussion, has claimed that the conversation happened months ago.

We have not been able to independently verify the audio clip, but it is evident that an undated conversation has been added to the video of a meeting chaired by the prime minister to give it a false spin.

(With inputs from SM Hoax Slayer)

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9643651818, or e-mail it to us at webqoof@thequint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)

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