Editor: Rajbir Singh
A video showing people taking out a march while being armed with sticks is going viral with a claim that it shows supporters of the Samajwadi Party (SP) were preparing for violence in Uttar Pradesh's Etawah.
The claim was shared in the backdrop of the 2022 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, the results for which were declared on 10 March.
However, we found that the video could be dated back to July 2021 and was from Basti district in Uttar Pradesh.
The viral video was shared with a caption that read, "इटावा में लाल टोपी वाले गुंडे हिंसा की तैयारी करते हुए। उत्तर प्रदेश को बंगाल नहीं बनने देंगे।"
[Translation: Red cap goons preparing for violence in Etawah. We will not allow Uttar Pradesh to become Bengal.]
The claim was shared by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson for UP Prashant Umrao, who has been called out for spreading misinformation in the past.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
Using the InVID WeVerify Google Chrome extension, we extracted keyframes from the viral video and conducted a reserve image search on some of the keyframes on Google with keywords like "Samajwadi Party and Akhilesh Yadav."
In the search results, we came across a tweet by a Rajesh Yadav, an SP MLC from UP. The tweet, which was posted on 9 July 2021, carried the viral video.
The caption of the tweet said that the crowd had assembled to protest in support of SP candidate Talewan Yadav. It further said that the supporters of the BJP were trying to prevent Talewan from filing nominations and that lead the SP supporters to show up.
Taking a cue from the caption, we conducted a Google search and found a report in the Hindi daily Jagran, published on 10 July 2021.
The report said that a case was registered against 720 people, including Talewan and his wife, following the ruckus before the filing of nomination papers in Dubauliya, Basti.
We also found a response from Etawah police's official Twitter handle stating that the video was old and not related to the 2022 UP Assembly elections.
Evidently, an old video from 2021 was shared as a recent one in the run-up to the results of the 2022 UP Assembly elections.