Video of Durga Puja pandal in Kolkata goes viral as Ayodhya’s Ram temple

By: Mohammad Salman
January 22 2024

Share Article: facebook logo twitter logo linkedin logo
Video of Durga Puja pandal in Kolkata goes viral as Ayodhya’s Ram temple

Social media users have claimed that this video shows Ram temple in Ayodhya. (Source: X, Facebook/Screenshot)


The Verdict False

The video shows a special themed pandal (makeshift pavilion) set up in Kolkata during the festival of Durga Puja.

Claim ID b62acfe0

Editor's note: This fact-check was first published in Hindi on December 19, 2023, and has been republished in English after social media posts linked it to the Ram temple consecration. 

On the day of the Ram temple consecration ceremony, many people shared a video of a lit up temple-like structure, claiming that it shows the new temple in Ayodhya. This video has gone viral on X (formerly Twitter) and Facebook. An archive can be seen here, here, here, and here.

Screenshots of posts made online (Source: Screenshot/X/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, this video does not show the Ram temple, but a Durga Puja pandal decorated in Kolkata.

What are the facts?
We first checked media reports on the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya and found that the Ram temple is still under construction. On December 15, pictures of the Ram temple were shared on the X account of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra. The pictures show the current status of the construction of the temple’s first floor of the temple. The viral video shows a completed temple-like structure, indicating that the video cannot be that of the Ram temple. 

Where is the viral video from? 
A reverse image search of the keyframes in the video led us to several media reports with photos and videos showing scenes similar to the video. A report in Outlook India, published on October 24, 2023, states that a Ram temple-themed Durga Puja pandal was set up at the Santosh Mitra Square in North Kolkata. The report contains several photographs of a Ram temple-themed pandal, with scenes similar to the viral video.

A picture of the Ram temple-themed pandal in an Outlook India report. (Source: Outlook India/Screenshot)

A video report uploaded by the Hindi news channel Aaj Tak on October 16, states that Union Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurated the Durga pandal. The organizer of this Durga Puja pandal, a BJP leader, had invited Amit Shah for the inauguration.

Several media outlets like Navbharat Times, The Wire, Prabhat Khabar, OTV News and others reported on this Durga puja pandal.

We also found a Facebook post dated October 17 in which several videos and photos were shared of a Ram Mandir-themed Durga Puja pandal in Kolkata's Santosh Mitra Square. We can see the exact visuals seen in the now-viral video.

We can see similarities between the now-viral visuals below and the Ram temple-themed puja pandal set up in Kolkata's Santosh Mitra Square.

A comparison of the viral video and the Facebook post showing the pandal in Kolkata. (Source: Facebook/Screenshot)

The verdict
A video of a Durga Puja pandal in Kolkata modelled after the Ram temple in Ayodhya has been shared with the claim that it shows the new Ram temple in Ayodhya. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

(Translated by: Sanyukta Dharmadhikari)

Read this fact-check in Hindi here.

Read this fact-check in:

English , हिंदी

Would you like to submit a claim to fact-check or contact our editorial team?

Global Fact-Checks Completed

We rely on information to make meaningful decisions that affect our lives, but the nature of the internet means that misinformation reaches more people faster than ever before