Old, unrelated visuals shared as images of Pakistani students injured in Kyrgyzstan violence

By: Ankita Kulkarni
May 19 2024

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Old, unrelated visuals shared as images of Pakistani students injured in Kyrgyzstan violence

Screenshot of a viral post claiming that all these images show Pakistan students injured in recent Kyrgyzstan mob violence against South Asians. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

A set of unrelated images from incidents from India and Pakistan have been linked to recent Kyrgyzstan violence. These images are not recent.

Claim ID cad41d56

(Trigger warning: This story includes distressing visuals. Reader discretion is advised.)

What is the claim?

Multiple images depicting injured individuals are circulating on social media, claiming that they show Pakistani students who were attacked in Kyrgyzstan amid violence against South Asians.

Clashes broke out in Kyrgyzstan’s Bishkek on May 17, where some local residents reportedly attacked hostels housing students from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. The tensions escalated after a video of a brawl between Kyrgyz students and international students went viral and caused retaliation by Kyrgyz mobs against foreigners in the country. Several media houses also initially reported that three to four Pakistani students were allegedly killed in the violence. However, the Pakistan Embassy in Kyrgyzstan has refuted such claims.

After the violence was reported, an X (formerly Twitter) user shared several images allegedly showing the injured Pakistani students. The post (archived here) was captioned, “You cannot convince us that there is no death. Where is the proof of life?#Bishkek #Kyrgyzstan #SavePakistaniStudents (sic).” Archived versions of similar posts carrying the viral images can be viewed here, here, here, and here.  

Screenshots of posts circulating the viral images on social media. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the now-viral images are old and unrelated to the recent Kyrgyzstan violence.

What did we find?

Logically Facts found three unrelated images being wrongly linked with recent events in Kyrgyzstan. Reverse image search revealed that these pictures have been online since at least 2016.

Image 1

Screenshot of  one of the viral image. (Source: X/Modified by Logically Facts) 

The first picture shows a man with a head injury lying on a hospital bed covered in a mustard-colored blanket. We deduced that the image is of Indian cricketer Rishabh Pant receiving treatment after he met with a road accident on December 30, 2022. 

The viral picture and similar images of Pant in the hospital can be found in the reports published by news outlets such as The Times of India and India Today. According to the reports, Pant was injured after his car hit a divider on the Delhi-Dehradun highway in India. 

Image 2

Screenshot of a post sharing another viral image. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts) 

The second image also shows a person with an injury on his head, wearing a light blue-colored shirt over a dark blue t-shirt, with others around him holding what looks like an intravenous solution bottle over his head. We found the picture in a report published by The Dawn, a Pakistani media outlet, on October 29, 2016. The image caption said, “MUZAFFARABAD: A man injured in Indian shelling being shifted to a hospital in Nakyal sector.” The report added that three people were killed and six injured in a shelling conducted by the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) at the Line of Control (LOC).

Image 3

Screenshot of the third viral image. (Source: X/Screenshot.Modified by Logically Facts)

The third photograph also depicts a man on a hospital bed with an IV drip attached to his wrist. We found that the image dates back to 2021 and shows a stabbing victim from Karachi, Pakistan. The exact image was posted on X (archived here) on March 18, 2021, and the accompanying caption stated, “The FIR registered at PS Sharah e Faisal against one #IbrahimDurrani for stabbing two brothers after a quarrel over a parking/driving issue in #PAFFalconComplex #JusticeForMoazzams.” A Facebook post (archived here)  by The Times of Karachi on March 18, 2021, also included the exact image providing similar details of the incident. The Dawn, reporting on the incident, added that Ibrahim Durrani was arrested and later granted bail for attacking three people — Pakistani fashion designer Mohammad Moazzam Khan and his two sons — in Karachi.

Other images

Some of the posts also included a picture of a person with a bloodied nose, and at least one Indian media outlet has reported that it is from the violence in Kyrgyzstan. Other posts have also included an image of a man wearing a purple-colored shirt lying on the ground with blood around his nose and forehead. This image was also shared with the claim that it shows a ‘Bangladesh student killed in Kyrgyzstan.” However, we could not find any credible evidence of whether the images are recent. 

We have contacted the Pakistan Embassy in Kyrgyzstan for details on these two images, and the check will be updated if and when receive a response.

Pakistani students killed in attacks?

It is to be noted that the Pakistan Embassy in Kyrgyzstan, on its official X account (archived here), has denied the reports of any Pakistani student dying in Kyrgyzstan at the time of writing. The embassy stated, “Kyrgyz government has confirmed that there is no death of Pakistani student in the recent mob violences against international students. Moreover, Kygyz Ministry of Internal Affairs has also issued press releases stating that the situation is under control (sic).”   

The verdict

Images from different, unrelated incidents from as long ago as 2016 are being shared falsely as Pakistani students injured amid Kyrgyzstan mob violence. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

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