A video showing some men wearing skull caps being thrashed by men in uniform with sticks is being shared widely on social media with a claim that three people were held in Rajasthan's Ajmer for spying for Pakistan.
On Friday, 18 February, a man identified as Mohammad Yunus, was arrested for allegedly spying for Pakistan, reported news agency PTI.
However, we found that this video was from April 2020 and shows Madhya Pradesh's Ratlam police thrashing people for assembling and offering namaz (prayers) in violation of coronavirus rules.
The 15-second video is being shared on social media with the claim in Hindi, that reads, "अजमेर से पाकिस्तान के लिए जासूसी करने वाले मोहम्मद यूनुस,अहमद मौलाना,और सद्दाम को सेना ने हिरासत में लिया."
(Translation: Army detained Mohammed Yunus, Ahmed Maulana, and Saddam who spied for Pakistan from Ajmer.)
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
Since the claim mentioned that three were detained from Ajmer for spying for Pakistan, we looked for the incident on Google. This lead us to news reports that mentioned that one Mohammad Yunus, was arrested in Ajmer for allegedly spying for Pakistan.
We then fragmented the viral video using InVid, a video verification tool, and conducted a reverse image search on several keyframes.
A Yandex reverse search result led us to a video on YouTube that was published on 18 April 2020.
The title in Hindi, translated to, 'people offering prayers at Ukala road in Ratlam'.
Taking this as a cue, we looked for news reports in the incident.
A report by NDTV India on 18 April 2020 read that police thrashed people who had assembled for Friday prayers in Ratlam.
Some people were arrested while offering namaz located in front of the Sudama complex on Unkala Road in Ratlam.
The accused were booked under Sections 188 (disobedience to order promulgated by public servant), 269 (negligent act likely to spread a dangerous disease), 270 (malignant act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) of the Indian Penal Code.
We also found a tweet by Anurag Dwary, resident editor of NDTV, who had tweeted the video on 17 April 2020. The viral part can be seen in the video from 0:23-0:38 secs.
Clearly, a video from 2020 is being shared on social media falsely claiming that three people were detained for spying for Pakistan.