Unrelated video from Chhattisgarh miscaptioned to show protest against Manipur sexual assault incident

By: Ishita Goel
July 21 2023

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Unrelated video from Chhattisgarh miscaptioned to show protest against Manipur sexual assault incident


The Verdict False

The video is from Raipur where some youths protested naked against fake caste certificates being allegedly used to get jobs reserved for SC/STs.

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(Trigger Warning: This story contains descriptions of distressing visuals, and mentions of sexual assault. Reader discretion is advised.)


A video from the Indian state of Manipur showing a horrific incident of sexual assault emerged online on Wednesday, sparking nationwide outrage. The video captured an incident from May 4, when dozens of men sexually assaulted two women from the Kuki-Zomi community and paraded them naked down a road in the Thoubal district of Manipur. The video has emerged more than two months after deadly ethnic clashes broke out between the Meiteis and Kuki communities in the northeastern state. 

While the police arrested four accused as of Friday, the video has brought back focus to Manipur, where more than 140 people have been killed and thousands displaced since the clashes first broke out on May 3. The video has triggered protests in several parts of India. 

At the same time, several visuals shared with false and misleading narratives have emerged online regarding the aftermath of the horrific incident of sexual assault. In one such video, a group of men holding placards can be seen running and protesting naked on a road. The video has been shared by several users claiming that it shows people protesting over 'the Manipur incident.' One tweet sharing the video with a similar claim had over 350,000 views and more than 1,080 likes at the time of publishing. Archive of the posts are here and here

However, the protest seen in the video is unrelated to the Manipur sexual assault incident. 

In Fact

We noticed that one of the placards carried by the protestors, written in Hindi, read, ‘267 फर्जी जाति प्रमाण पत्र चारकों को संरक्षण देना बंद करो (Stop giving protection to 267 fake caste certificate holders),’ while another read ,‘आरक्षित जनप्रतिनिधि चुप्पी तोड़ो। अपनी राजनीतिक गुलामी छोड़ो (Reserved employes break the silence, stop your political slavery).’ This suggests that the protests had to do something with the policy of reservation for Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) in jobs and education,

We then discovered that the video was from a protest held in Chhattisgarh's Raipur on July 18. The Times of India (TOI) published a video news report on the incident with blurred visuals of the demonstration. The report titled "Youths ran naked towards Vidhansabha, staged a nude protest in Chattisgarh" showed the same visuals as the viral clip from the 0:51 timestamp. Though the video is blurred, it is easy to spot a man trying to stop the protestors as they run on the road, just like in the viral clip. According to the video report, over a dozen men holding placards ran naked on roads toward the State Assembly (Vidhan Sabha) building in Raipur, chanting slogans against the Chhattisgarh government. 

Another TOI report published July 18 carried a blurred screenshot from the viral clip. The report said that around 20 youths protested against people with fake caste certificates allegedly taking up jobs reserved for SC/SCTs. They demanded action against those found guilty of using fake caste certificates at their protest on the first day of the Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly's Monsoon Session. The protestors were later detained by the police, who could also be seen running behind them in an attempt to stop them.

News 18 MP Chhattisgarh, a part of the News 18 conglomerate, carried footage of the same protest in a video news report on July 18. The video report was published on YouTube and titled, "Nude demonstration by youth in Chhattisgarh, police take action."

On July 19, The Indian Express reported on the protest and said 29 men were arrested for running naked on a road near Raipur's Vidhan Sabha Bhavan. The report added that before his arrest, one of the protesters said, “We want 267 government servants who used fake certificates to be arrested and their property attached. We went on hunger striker earlier, but no action was taken. We are ready to go to any limits for this.”

Vishnukant Tiwari, a journalist who reports from Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, had also shared footage of the same protest, though captured from a different angle, on Twitter. He shared the video with the caption: "Tribal youth stage nude protest in Chhattisgarh. Demand removal of 267 government employees alleging fraudulent use of caste certificates to get reservation."

The Verdict

The video in question shows men in Raipur protesting naked against the state government's alleged inaction over recruitment for government jobs based on alleged fake caste certificates. The video has been falsely linked with protests against the Manipur sexual assault incident. Therefore, we mark the claim as false.



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