A video is being shared on social media claiming it as the visuals of a temple priest attacking a Christian man for asking him to believe in Jesus and get converted into Christianity. The post claims that this incident had taken place in the Secunderabad Ganesh temple. Let’s verify the claim made in the post.
The archived version of the post can be seen here.
Claim: Video of a priest attacking a Christian man as he preached Christianity in the Secunderabad Ganesh Temple.
Fact: This incident did take place recently in the Ganesh temple in Secunderabad, Telangana. But the man who was assaulted by the temple priest is not a Christian. Prabhakar Sharma, one of the priests in the Secunderabad Ganesh temple, assaulted a devotee for entering the sanctum sanctorum of other temples without permission. Valmiki Rao, the devotee who was assaulted, filed an FIR against Prabhakar Sharma in the Secunderabad Gopalapuram Police Station. Gopalapuram PS SHO Sai Eshwar Gaud confirmed FACTLY that the assaulted devotee does not belong to the Christian community. Hence, the claim made in the post is MISLEADING.
On reverse image search of the screenshots in the video, a video with similar visuals was found published by the ‘ETV Telangana’ YouTube channel on 06 March 2022. This video reported that Secunderabad Ganapati Temple priest Sudhakar Sharma had assaulted a devotee for entering the sanctum sanctorum of other temples without permission. These scenes were recorded in the CCTV cameras of the temple.
Reporting the complete details of the incident, several news websites published articles and videos. They can be seen here, here, and here. The incident took place on 27 February 2022. These news websites reported the assaulted devotee as one Valmiki Rao. The assaulted devotee had approached the Secunderabad Gopalapuram police station and lodged a complaint against priest Sudhakar Sharma. Police arrested Sudhakar Sharma and further interrogation was underway.
FACTLY contacted Gopalpuram PS SHO Sai Eshwar Gaud for further clarification regarding the religious identity of the assaulted devotee. Sai Eshwar Gaud confirmed FACTLY that the attacked devotee Valmiki Rao belongs to the Munnuru Kapu community of the Hindu religion. He clarified that there is no communal angle in this incident. We will update the article once the FIR was available on the TS Police website.
To sum it up, the man who was assaulted by the Secunderabad Ganesh Temple priest in this video is not a Christian.