English, Fake News

A video that predates the 8 February 2024 Haldwani clashes is being falsely misattributed to it.


A video of a police lathi charge on a mob is being shared on social media, claiming that the incident occurred in Haldwani, Uttarakhand. This is being linked to the clashes that erupted between police and locals following the demolition of a madarsa and a mosque by the Haldwani Municipal Corporation as an anti-encroachment measure. This incident happened on 8 February 2024. Through this article, we will fact-check this claim.

An archived version of this post can be found here.

Claim: This video shows police lathi charging a mob in Haldwani, Uttarakhand, during a clash after a madarsa and a mosque were demolished in an anti-encroachment drive.

Fact: The viral video predates the events in Haldwani and shows police handling a crowd in the Ghatkopar area of Mumbai following the arrest of an Islamic preacher. Hence, the claim made in the post is False.

To verify this claim, we performed a reverse image search on the internet using keyframes from the viral video. We discovered several social media posts (here and here) that contained the same video uploaded before 8 February 2024, when the clashes in Haldwani erupted.

According to these posts, the incident took place in Ghatkopar, Mumbai. Further internet searches confirmed this and led us to news reports (here and here) about an incident in Ghatkopar where hundreds of people gathered outside a police station. This crowd attempted to stop the Gujarat anti-terror squad from taking Islamic preacher Mufti Salman Azhari, who had been arrested on charges of hate speech, to Gujarat.

Although news reports did not feature the viral video, the video predates the Haldwani clashes and matches the visuals from the Ghatkopar incident. You can view the related news reports and videos here and here. Aditionally, you can find reports related to the lathi charge that took place in Haldwani after the demolition of the madarsa here and here.

To sum up, the video being shared as a lathi charge in Haldwani, Uttarakhand, is from an unrelated incident in Ghatkopar, Mumbai. 


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