A newspaper clipping stating that Osama bin Laden’s daughter ‘Zoya’ is set to marry Bhojpuri singer, Pradeep Maurya, has gone viral on social media.
Speaking to The Quint, Maurya rubbished these claims, calling them “completely fabricated.” The woman in the clipping is actually Pakistani actress Syra Yousuf and we also found that public records of bin Laden’s family do not mention any daughter named ‘Zoya.’
The viral clipping is being shared with several versions of the same claim,
“ओसामा बिन लादेन की बेटी जोया खान की शादी गायक प्रदीप मौर्य के साथ हिन्दू रीति रिवाज के साथ अगले महीने होगा। इससे पहले ये दोनों मुम्बई में आर्य समाज मंदिर में शादी कर हिन्दू धर्म अपनाया। जोया ने कहा कि दुनियां का सबसे बेकार और गन्दा धर्म है इस्लाम।”
(Translation: “Zoya Khan, daughter of Osama bin Laden, will be married to singer Pradeep Maurya, next month with Hindu customs. Earlier, both of them married in the Arya Samaj temple in Mumbai and adopted Hinduism. Zoya said Islam is the world's most useless and dirty religion.”)
The claim can be traced back to 2014, when Prashant Patel Umrao, a practising advocate in the Supreme Court, had tweeted the newspaper clipping.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
WHO IS THE WOMAN IN THE CLIPPING?
A reverse image search on Yandex led us to a blog, carrying the same flipped image, which stated that she is Syra Yousuf, a Pakistani actress.
We also found Syra’s verified Instagram account with 1.5 million followers.
A comparison of an image from her Instagram account, the newspaper clipping and a flipped version of the same image can be found below.
She also goes by the name Syra Shahroz. According to an article in The Express Tribune, a Pakistani daily, Syra had married Sheroz Shabzwar in 2012.
She recently announced their split on Instagram, in February 2020.
The clipping suggests that Zoya is bin Laden’s first wife’s eldest daughter. However, the records state that his first wife, Najwa, had 11 sons and daughters, out of which Fatima is the eldest daughter.
WHO IS THE MAN IN THE CLIPPING?
A reverse image search led us to actor Pradeep Maurya’ Facebook page, with the same image as its profile picture.
The Quint confirmed with the actor that these rumours are untrue.
“This news is completely fabricated. I am married to Ishita Singh Rajput since 2018,” Maurya stated.
Further, there are no news reports of Osama bin Laden’s daughters converting to Hinduism or marrying a Hindu man.
Evidently, images of popular actors from Pakistan and India have been used to fabricate false claims that bin Laden’s daughter had married a Hindu man.