No, anti-Pakistan slogans were not raised against its cricket squad's arrival in India

By: Rahul Adhikari
September 28 2023

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No, anti-Pakistan slogans were not raised against its cricket squad's arrival in India

Screenshot of social media post falsely claiming 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans were raised at the Hyderabad airport. (Source:X/Facebook/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

The viral clip with 'Pakistan Murdababad' slogans is digitally altered. The police have denied that the Pakistani squad was greeted with such slogans.

Claim ID c97851ed

The Pakistani cricket team reached India on September 27 for the upcoming ICC ODI Men's World Cup 2023. The much-anticipated cricket tournament will commence on October 5 and conclude on November 19. The Pakistani team, which landed at Hyderabad's Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, is visiting India after a gap of seven years. 

What is the claim?

Soon after the Pakistani team landed in Hyderabad, a video has surfaced on social media claiming that 'Pakistan Murdabad (Down with Pakistan)' slogans were raised upon the arrival of the sportspersons. The viral video shows Pakistani cricketers, including skipper Babar Azam, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Nawaz, and Imam-Ul-Haq, walking out of the airport with several police officials guarding them, as someone shouts 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans in the background. One police official is seen recording the video of Pakistani cricketers. 

Sharing the video with the alleged anti-Pakistan slogans, one user on X (formerly Twitter) wrote, "Pakistan Murdabad chants were raised when Pakistan teππorist team arrived in Bharat Based public. I bow down to them #PakistanCricketTeam." An archived version of the post can be found here. This post alone had gained over 44,000 views at the time of publishing.

The video is circulating on Facebook with similar claims. An archived version of one such post can be found here.

Screenshot of the viral post on Facebook. (Source: X/Facebook/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the viral claim is false. The video has been digitally altered to include 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans.

What did we find?

We found a longer version of the video of the Pakistani cricket team at Hyderabad airport, from which the viral clip seems to have been taken out. The Economic Times (ET) published the extended version on YouTube on September 27 with the title "Cricket World Cup 2023: Pakistan Cricket Team Arrives at Hyderabad Airport." In the video, which is 126 seconds long, we can see the Pakistani squad exiting the airport and then boarding a bus. While ET has added some additional music to its video report, the original audio from the recording is clearly audible, and no anti-Pakistan slogans can be heard.

Around the 1:21 timestamp of the ET video, we can see the same person donning an identity card looking towards the camera as seen at the 0:04 mark of the viral clip shared online.

Comparison between the viral video and the YouTube video published by The Economic Times (ET). (Source: X/YouTube/Modified by Logically Facts)

One second later, the ET video shows Pakistani players standing in a queue— a sight similar to the visual seen at the 0:05 mark of the viral clip, confirming that both the videos are same.

Comparison between the viral video and the video published by The Economic Times on YouTube. (Source: X/YouTube/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the viral clip in question carries the 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogan, whereas the ET video does not. This stark contrast indicates that the viral video was manipulated, and the audio of the anti-Pakistan slogans was digitally inserted.

Hindustan Times also published a video of the Pakistan cricket team's arrival in India amid high security. This video was captured from a different angle but shows the same incident. We compared this video with the viral clip and spotted the same Pakistani cricketers and the police officials accompanying them. The report doesn't mention anything about anyone raising 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans.

News agency ANI also released a video of Pakistani players leaving the Hyderabad airport and boarding a bus. The video shows similar visuals as the viral clip with clear ambiance audio and no extraneous music. Notably, the ANI video also does not show any instances of 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans being raised as the squad left the airport.

Cyberabad Metropolitan Police also confirmed that 'Pakistan Murdabad' slogans were not raised during the sportspersons' arrival in Hyderabad. R Srinivas, Inspector, RGI Airport Police Station, told Logically Facts, "There was no such incident. Nobody raised any anti-Pakistan slogans. One person named Bashir, who is a Pakistani citizen living in the United States, raised pro-Pakistan slogans in support of his country. He came for the World Cup."

According to The New Indian Express, the police detained Pakistani cricket fan Bashir, better known as Chacha Bashir, for waving the Pakistani flag at the airport. Chacha Bashir is famous among Indian and Pakistani cricket fans because of his bond with former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

The verdict

A video of the Pakistani cricket team leaving Hyderabad airport was digitally altered to falsely claim that anti-Pakistan slogans were raised upon the squad's arrival in India. The police have confirmed that no such incident took place. Therefore, we mark the claim false.

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