Clipped video of President Droupadi Murmu's speech shared to falsely claim she supports wrestlers' protest

By: Annet Preethi Furtado
June 28 2023

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Clipped video of President Droupadi Murmu's speech shared to falsely claim she supports wrestlers' protest


The Verdict False

A part of the President's speech has been shared out of context with a false narrative. She has made no comments on the wrestlers' protest so far.

Claim ID 56e5cae1


A video featuring Indian President Droupadi Murmu is circulating on social media platforms with the claim that she has appealed for justice for protesting women wrestlers who have accused the chief of the Wrestling Federation of India(WFI) of sexual harassment. A post sharing the clip read: "For the first time, Her Excellency the President of India Draupadi Murmu spoke openly, said that women wrestlers should get justice…"

The viral clip, which is slightly over a minute long, bears a News 24 logo. It captures President Murmu saying in Hindi: "I believe they should receive justice." She emphasizes, "This is your responsibility. I feel like there must be a way. We create laws. If a law doesn't exist, then it should be created (translated).’’ Before concluding her speech, she says, "I feel like they deserve genuine happiness and justice. Where else can they seek redress? There is no higher authority than the Chief Justice of India or the Supreme Court..."

Earlier in April, several Indian wrestlers renewed their protests against the lack of action on several sexual harassment complaints against WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. However, the wrestlers recently announced that they would shift their campaign from street protests to the court, looking to pursue legal avenues for their cause.

In Fact

On searching the YouTube channel of the Hindi news outlet News 24, we came across a four-minute-long video of Murmu's speech uploaded on June 1. The viral clip has been taken from this video and is being shared out of context to link Murmu’s comment to the wrestler’s agitation

We also came across a video on the official YouTube channel of the office of the President of India, which live-streamed the inauguration ceremony of a new building at the Jharkhand High Court. The event took place on May 24 and was attended by several notable people, such as Chief Justice of India (CJI) D.Y. Chandrachud, and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, apart from President Murmu. The clip shared on social media starts at the 1:18:18 timestamp in this extended video. We went through the video and found that the President makes no reference to the protesting wrestlers. In her speech, she draws attention to the fact that despite individuals receiving verdicts for their cases after prolonged periods, they do not always obtain the justice that these verdicts promise. 

Further, Murmu discusses her work at a family counseling center in a village, where her team would follow up on cases deemed finalized. She recounts how many people approached her, stating that despite winning cases and obtaining favorable verdicts, their verdicts are not enforced. Addressing judges, state and union ministers, Murmu also emphasizes the need for genuine justice for marginalized communities and calls upon those present to take responsibility and find a solution. She also asserts the necessity of establishing new laws if existing ones are inadequate. This part of the speech has been selectively extracted and shared to falsely claim that the President was talking about justice for women wrestlers. 

There are also no credible news reports or social media posts that sugges that President Murmu expressed support for women wrestlers. 

The Verdict

A video excerpt from President Droupadi Murmu's speech at the inauguration of a new building for the Jharkhand High Court is being shared out of context. The viral video falsely insinuates that President Murmu called for justice for protesting women wrestlers.

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