WebQoof Recap: Misinformation Around Nepal Plane Crash, UK PM Rishi Sunak & More

Here's a recap of some of the most viral claims that we debunked this week.

4 min read
WebQoof Recap: Misinformation Around Nepal Plane Crash, UK PM Rishi Sunak & More
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From old and unrelated visuals being shared claiming to show the recent plane crash near Nepal's Pokhara International Airport on 15 January to a clip of people enjoying a feast on banana leaves peddled as one of UK PM Rishi Sunak's office staff celebrating Pongal, here's a quick recap of some of the most viral claims we debunked this week.


1. News Outlets Share Old Photo of Plane Crash in Nepal as Recent

A photo showing a crashed plane went viral on social media platforms with users linking it to the recent plane crash near Nepal's Pokhara International Airport on 15 January.

The photograph was shared by many media outlets including news agency ANI, The Economic Times, and India Today among others.

The claim uses a photo from 2012.

(Source: The Quint)

But, the photo dates back to 28 September 2012, when a Dornier aircraft with seven British and five Chinese passengers on board, which was on its way to Everest, crashed after taking off from Nepal's Kathmandu Airport.

You can read the full story here.


2. Did the British Government Confer the Title of ‘Mahatma’ on MK Gandhi? No!

A photo of a document was being shared to claim that the British Government bestowed the title 'Mahatma' on Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in 1938 went viral on social media platforms.

The memorandum was issued by the Congress provincial government in 1938.

(Source: The Quint)

But we found that the Congress provincial government had issued the memorandum seen in the graphic, not the British Government.

Additionally, author Ramachandra Guha credited Pranjivandas Mehta as the first person to refer to Gandhi as 'Mahatma' in his book and in 2016, the Gujarat High Court upheld that it was Rabindranath Tagore who bestowed the title on Gandhi.

You can read our full story here.


3. Media Outlets Share Unrelated Video as One of UK PM Rishi Sunak’s Pongal Feast

A video showing people sitting along a long table for a feast and eating with their hands was shared on social media with a claim that it showed UK PM Rishi Sunak's office staff enjoying a traditional Pongal feast hosted by the prime minister in London.

Media organisations including India TV, One India, and Zee News Kannada also shared the video with the same claim.

But the video shows a Pongal celebration hosted by Tamil Cultural Association in the Waterloo region in Ontaria, Canada.

You can read our fact-check here.


4. 2014 Video From Russia Falsely Linked to Recent Helicopter Crash in Kyiv

A short video showing a helicopter landing before tipping over and going up in a cloud of smoke and flames is being shared on social media as visuals of the helicopter crash in Brovary, in Kyiv, Ukraine on 18 January.

The crash claimed 18 lives, which included Ukraine's Interior Minister Denys Monastyrskyy and three children.

The video has been on the internet since September 2014.

(Source: The Quint)

However, this video is old and has been on the internet since September 2014. It reportedly shows an Mi-8 aircraft crashing at Gelendzhik Airport in Krasnodar, Russia.

Read our fact-check here.


5. Is This Picture From Recent Nepal Plane Crash? No, the Viral Claim Is False

A photo showing a crashed aircraft in an open space, with several people surrounding it is being shared with the claim that it showed the aircraft which crashed near Pokhara International Airport in Nepal on 15 January, killing all of the 68 people on board.

An archive of this post can be seen here.

(Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

But though the photo is from Nepal, it is an old one dating back to April 2019. It shows an aeroplane carrying three people which crashed into stationary helicopters at Nepal's Lukla Airport.

Read the full story here.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9643651818, or e-mail it to us at 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:  Webqoof   WebQoof Recap   UK PM Rishi Sunak 

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