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WebQoof Recap: Of Misinformation on 2022 Assembly Elections & Protests in UP

From old, unrelated photos shared as 'situation in UP' to morphed screenshot spreading misinformation on AAP.

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WebQoof
4 min read
WebQoof Recap: Of Misinformation on 2022 Assembly Elections & Protests in UP
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From old and unrelated photos and videos linked to the upcoming assembly elections in five states to misinformation on protests held by teachers aspirants in Uttar Pradesh, here's what mislead people this week.

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1. Old Video Linked With Protests Over Job Exam Irregularities in Uttar Pradesh

A video showing a group of policemen lathi-charging a crowd of protesters was viral with a claim that it shows the Uttar Pradesh police beating up a protesting group of teacher aspirants.

This claim was shared in the backdrop of protests over alleged irregularities in the 2019 Uttar Pradesh exam to recruit 69,000 assistant teachers.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archive of the post can be found <a href="https://perma.cc/M497-GUPW">here</a>.</p></div>

An archive of the post can be found here.

(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

We extracted keyframes from the viral video and conducted a reverse image search on some of them. While going through the results, we found the viral video was not related to the protests of teacher aspirants. The 2019 video showed the UP police lathi-charging a group of people protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) in Lucknow.

Read the full story here.

2. 2017 Photo From Bihar Wrongly Shared as State of ‘Yogi’s Uttar Pradesh'

A photograph of two men on a motorcycle, with a woman's corpse between them was shared on social media to claim that it showed the situation in Uttar Pradesh, where the men were forced to carry the woman's corpse on their two-wheeler due to the unavailability of ambulances.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archive of this post can be seen <a href="https://perma.cc/QZ7K-237N">here</a>.</p></div>

An archive of this post can be seen here.

(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

But we found that the photograph was old, and not from Uttar Pradesh. The photograph is five years old, and was taken in Bihar's Purnea, where a family was forced to carry the woman's corpse home on a motorcycle for its last rites after being denied a mortuary van.

Read the full story here.

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3. Picture From Rajasthan Shared as BJP Leader Attacked in UP During Campaigning

A photo of a man in a ripped white clothing was shared with a claim that the man is a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader who was chased and attacked by villagers in Uttar Pradesh when he went to campaign for votes.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archived version of this post can be seen <ins><a href="https://perma.cc/BR3B-4889">here</a></ins>.</p></div>

An archived version of this post can be seen here.

(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

We conducted a reverse image search and found that the claim was false. The photo shows former Rajasthan Legislative Assembly speaker and BJP leader Kailash Meghwal. In the viral claim, Meghwal is seen leaving the site of a farmers’ protest in Sri Ganganagar in Rajasthan after being thrashed by the crowd in July 2021.

Read the full story here.

4. Morphed ABP News Bulletin Shared With False Claim on AAP’s Raghav Chadha

A screenshot of a news bulletin, showing Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Raghav Chadha speaking at a press conference in Punjab was shared online.

The screenshot showed a bulletin, where Chadha purportedly passed a comment on AAP's Punjab chief ministerial candidate Bhagwant Mann, saying, "Like iron cuts iron, in the same way, a drunkard will fight against alcohol/drugs."

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archived versionthis post can be seen <a href="https://archive.is/zaYLC">here</a>.</p></div>

An archived versionthis post can be seen here.

(Source: Twitter/Screenshot)

But we found that the screenshot was morphed. The edited screenshot shared in the claim contains an inverted ABP News logo. Additionally, in the original bulletin that aired on 18 January and discusses Mann, the text simply reads Chadha's name, designation and party affiliation.

Read the full story here.

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5. Photo of Seer From Haryana Falsely Shared as Yogi Covered in Snow in Himalayas

Several social media users are sharing a photo of a what seems like a seer sitting and meditating with the claim that it shows a yogi (seer) covered in snow and meditating in the Himalayas.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>An archive of the tweet can be found <a href="https://perma.cc/WUV4-ZHS9">here</a>.</p></div>

An archive of the tweet can be found here.

(Source: Twitter/Screenshot)

However, we found that the claim is false. The man seen in the photo is a seer named Baba Sarbangi also known as Bhale Giriji Maharaj from Rindhana village in Haryana. In the photo he is seen covered in ashes and performing 'Agni tapasya', a form of prayer in Hindu religion where one meditates around fire.

The viral image was edited to make the false claim about the seer being covered in snow.

Read the full story here.

(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.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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