Scripted Video of Person Adding Toilet Cleaner in Food Viral With Communal Claim
We found a version of the video that carried a disclaimer calling the video "scripted".
A video showing two people accusing a man of adding toilet cleaner in the water served with gol gappas (water balls) has gone viral with a communal claim.
In the video, two people confront this individual and enquire why he was risking people's lives by adding toilet cleaner to the water. The individual has been identified as one 'Zubair'.
However, we found that the video was a scripted one created for "awareness purposes". We found different versions of the video that carried a disclaimer that clarified that the video was not that of a real incident.
Such scripted videos, often carrying communal misinformation, have gone viral on social media since last year. WebQoof has debunked several such videos that you can read about here.
The video was shared with a claim that read, "जुबेर नाम का जिहादी, पानी पताशे के पानी में हार्पिक मिलाकर लोगों को खिला रहा था. जिहादियों से कुछ भी सामान खरीदेंगे तो आपकी जान जाने का रिस्क रहेगा।"
[Translation: A jihadi named Zubair was mixing Harpic to the water served with pani pataashe. If you buy anything from jihadis, there will be a risk of losing your life.]
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
While going through the viral videos, we found a disclaimer embedded in the video at around 3:54 seconds.
The disclaimer read, "This video is fully scripted drama so don't mind and never to take seriously. All character are totally fictional. Video purpose only aware to people (sic)."
Such scripted or dramatised videos have gone viral since 2021 often with communal or misleading claims. While some of these videos contain a disclaimer – either embedded in the story or shared as a caption – very often they go viral without it.
To locate the original source of the video, we fragmented it into multiple keyframes, using InVid WeVerify Google Chrome extension, and conducted a reverse image search and combined it with relevant keywords such as "Gol gappa, disclaimer, scripted" in Hindi and English.
In the search results, we found a video posted on YouTube by a channel called "Gyan Bhandar". The disclaimer was embedded in the video, but not the caption.
We then looked up the Facebook page, which was linked in the 'about' section of the YouTube channel and found the video posted on 7 July. The video posted on Facebook carried a disclaimer stating that the video is scripted.
The video on Facebook had 28,000 shares and was viewed over five million times at the time of writing this story. We also found several other scripted videos shared by the page.
Evidently, a scripted video has gone viral with a false communal claim.
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