Old, unrelated video shared as ‘Balasore station master Sharif getting thrashed’

By: Anurag Baruah
June 26 2023

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Old, unrelated video shared as ‘Balasore station master Sharif getting thrashed’


The Verdict False

Logically Facts has earlier debunked the claim about the station master's religious identity. Further, we could trace this video back to 2021.

Claim ID 40b2d59d

(Editor’s note: Due to the graphic nature of the video, we have refrained from adding any links to it.)


In the backdrop of the Balasore triple-train accident earlier, which occurred on June 2, 2023, a video showing a naked man lying on the floor with his hands tied at the back and someone hitting him with a wooden plank is being shared massively on platforms like WhatsApp and Twitter. 

The claim along with the video suggests that the man in the video is the “main accused Mohammed Sharif," who was purportedly the station master. It goes on to add that he was arrested from a madrasa in West Bengal. This is in continuation with the several theories and false claims that went viral in the aftermath of the tragedy that claimed the lives of at least 291 people and injured over 1100. 

However, neither is this narrative correct nor is the video of a “station master” linked to the Balasore accident. While the video could be traced back to 2021 and is reportedly from Mexico, Logically Facts has debunked the narrative about the station master’s religious identity before. 

In Fact

A reverse image search on the keyframes of the viral video led us to a Reddit post from October 30, 2021. The viral video was uploaded to a community called ‘NarcoFootage’ that described itself as a community for discussion about Mexican cartels. The description stated that the video showed a thief being beaten with a paddle for stealing from a cartel. 

We could also locate the same video on some other video-sharing websites, which too mentioned the same details. Also, the attackers could be heard speaking in Spanish in the video. 

Though we could not independently confirm the context of the video or find any news report about it, we came across multiple news reports in Spanish and English about similar incidents involving Mexican cartels acting as vigilantes and taking the law into their own hands to punish petty thieves and robbers. 

What About The Station Master’s Identity?

Logically Facts had earlier debunked the claim that the station master’s name was “Mohammad Sharif” and that he was absconding.  

South Eastern Railways Chief Public Relations Officer, Aditya Kumar Chaudhary, told us that no staff member named Sharif is working at the Bahanaga railway station and added that no station official or staff was on the run. You can read our detailed fact-check here

The Verdict

Though we could not independently verify the original source of the viral video, it is clear that it has no connection to the Balasore train accident. We could trace it back to October 2021, with all available information pointing it to a 'Mexican cartel.’ Further, the station master’s name was SB Mohanty and not Mohammed Sharif, as claimed. 

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