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Old Clip Shared as Sheikhs Dancing At Abu Dhabi's BAPS Hindu Mandir Inauguration

The video has been on the internet since 2 May 2023 and has no connection to the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi, UAE

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WebQoof
3 min read
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A video of people dressed in thobes (or thawbs) – the traditional white ankle-length robe worn by men in the Arabian peninsula – dancing around a man dressed in saffron robes is being shared on social media.

The claim: The video is being shared to claim that it shows 'Arab sheikhs' dancing around a Hindu idol, celebrating the inauguration of the BAPS Swaminarayan temple in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

The video has been on the internet since 2 May 2023 and has no connection to the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi, UAE

An archive of this post can be seen here.

(Source: LinkedIn/Screenshot)

We received a query for this claim's verification on our WhatsApp tipline.

(Archived versions of more posts sharing such claims can be seen here, here, here, and here.)

Is it true?: We were able to trace it back to May 2023, but were unable to establish the context behind the video.

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How did we find out?: We divided the viral video into multiple keyframes using InVID, a video verification extension of Google Chrome, and ran a reverse image search on one of them.

  • This led us to the same video on a Facebook page, which had shared it with a similar claim about 'Sheikhs dancing around Hindu idols' on 14 January.

The video has been on the internet since 2 May 2023 and has no connection to the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi, UAE

The video was shared as a reel on 14 January 2024.

(Source: Facebook/Altered by The Quint)

  • The date indicates that the video is not related to the BAPS Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi, which was inaugurated a month after this video was shared.

  • Using 'Arab dancing around Hindu idol' as a keywords on Google with a date filter, we looked for more information about the viral video.

  • This led us to the same video, shared on 3 May 2023, by an X user, who claimed that it showed Hindus dressed as Arabs dancing at Dubai's Hare Krishna Mandir.

The video has been on the internet since 2 May 2023 and has no connection to the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi, UAE

The video has been on the internet since May 2023.

(Source: X/Altered by The Quint)

  • We came across more posts which shared the video with the same caption, one of which had reshared another post with the same video, but was now deleted.

  • Looking for an archived version of this post showed us the same video with a caption in Arabic, which was shared on 2 May 2023.

  • A translated version of the archived page mentioned that it showed "Hindus wearing Khaliji and worshipping and dancing around the idol," adding that other people may think it shows citizens of the Gulf Cooperation Council "celebrating the Hindu religion."

The video has been on the internet since 2 May 2023 and has no connection to the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi, UAE

The oldest post with this video was published on 2 May 2023.

(Source: Archive.is/Screenshot)

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  • Since The Quint could not independently verify the context or identify any people seen in the video, we have reached out to the Hare Krishna Mandir in Dubai, UAE for further clarification.

  • This report will be updated as and when we receive a response.

Conclusion: The video of people dressed in Arab outfits and dancing around an idol is an old one and has no connection to the recently inaugurated BAPS Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9540511818 , 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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Topics:  Hindu Temple   Abu Dhabi   Webqoof 

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