Photo From Vietnam Shared as 'Shivling Found in Gyanvapi Mosque Complex'
The Shiva Linga was discovered during the conservation project at a cluster of temples called My Son in Vietnam.
A photograph showing people carrying out excavation/restoration work in a pit has gone viral with a claim that it shows the 'Shivling' that was allegedly found inside the Gyanvapi mosque complex in Varanasi.
On Monday, 16 May, the Varanasi court directed that a spot in the mosque complex be sealed after it was claimed by the counsel representing the petitioners that a 'Shivling' was found during a three-day videographic survey of the place.
However, we found that the viral image was an old one from 2020 and it showed a Shiva Linga that was found in Quảng Nam province in central Vietnam. The discovery was made during the conservation project at Mỹ Sơn, which is a cluster of abandoned and partially ruined Hindu temples in the country.
Sharing the image, a Twitter user said, "The Shivling is 12 feet by 8 inches in diameter in ज्ञानवापी मंदिर (Gyanvapi temple). Now The Hindu side is seeking permission to worship daily at the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex."
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
We conducted a reverse image search of the viral photograph on Google and found that the image had been shared since 2020.
The photograph was part of a tweet shared by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Minister of State (MoS) for Food Processing Industries and Jal Shakti, Prahlad Singh Patel.
In his tweet, which was shared on 29 May 2020, Patel said that officials of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) found a 9th century Shiva Linga at the My Son site in Vietnam.
Patel was the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Culture and Tourism when the discovery was made.
The pictures were also shared by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.
We then looked up news reports by conducting a keyword search for "Shiva Linga found in Vietnam" and found multiple reports on the same.
A report published in The Print on 27 May 2020 said that "the ASI recently discovered a monolithic sandstone Shiva Linga from the 9th century CE ... in Quảng Nam province in central Vietnam."
Another report on The Indian Express talked about the related history and the presence of Hindu architecture in Southeast Asia.
Evidently, an old photograph from Vietnam showing the discovery of a Shiva Linga from a Hindu Temple complex has been shared with a claim that it is from Varanasi's Gyanvapi Mosque.
(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on , or e-mail it to us at and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories .)
Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.