Viral image does not show Maharashtra Chief Minister eating mutton on Ram Navami

By: Ankita Kulkarni
April 19 2024

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Viral image does not show Maharashtra Chief Minister eating mutton on Ram Navami

Screenshot of viral posts shared on social media. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

The original video depicts Eknath Shinde and YouTuber Kamiya Jani eating vegetarian meals prepared from eggplant.

Claim ID e9cfab96

What is the claim?

A day before voting for the general elections in some constituencies in the Indian state of Maharashtra kicked off, a picture of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde having a meal with a woman surfaced on social media, claiming that the leader consumed mutton (goat meat) on the occasion of Ram Navami, a Hindu festival commemorating the birth of Lord Ram. (Voting for the 18th Lok Sabha started on April 19 and will continue to go in phases till the announcement of results on June 4. )

One social media user shared the image (archived here) on X (formerly Twitter) with the caption, "CM Eknath enjoying mutton on #RamaNavami."

The post further stated, "#ShameOnBJP & #GodiMedia say something Andhbhakt if you have any self respect #NoVoteToBJP & ask Questions (sic)." This post alone garnered over 18,800 views at the time of writing and is widely being shared by several users with similar claims. Other archived versions of such posts can be viewed here, here, and here.

Screenshot of viral posts shared on social media. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts) 

The image was also shared (archived here) by a Congress member from Maharashtra, Mangesh Dutonde, with a Marathi caption, roughly translating to, "Who eats mutton on Ram Navami?"

These claims also come just days after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi criticized opposition leaders for allegedly eating mutton last year during the month of Sawan, considered auspicious by many Hindus.

However, the viral image was taken during an interview with Indian YouTuber Kamiya Jani that showed Shinde consuming a vegetarian meal. The picture is part of the footage uploaded on Jani's official YouTube channel called 'Curly Tales.' 

What did we find?

The woman in the viral picture is Kamiya Jani, an Indian YouTuber who runs the popular channel 'Curly Tales.' The channel is dedicated to content on food and travel, and she often has politicians, actors, and celebrities as guests in her videos. We then checked the Curly Tales YouTube channel and found a video uploaded on April 18 that featured Eknath Shinde. The video caption said, "On the auspicious day of Ram Navami, I enjoyed a very hearty veg saoji meal with Maharashtra's CM Shri Eknath Shinde." The location was mentioned as Umred town in Nagpur district, Maharashtra. 

In the video, Kamiya and Shinde can be seen donning the same attire as in the viral picture, establishing that the image is from the same interview. In the video, Shinde explains that the meal includes items like smashed eggplant (also known as baigan bharta), another curry prepared from the same vegetable, and a dish called 'patodi,' a vegetarian food item made using gram flour. He did not mention any meat-based dish. Jani also did not say anything about eating or enjoying mutton or any other meat dish.

The video also shows women cooking and peeling eggplants and other vegetables used to prepare the meal that the two eat later. At no point have they been shown preparing any meat.

 The same video was also uploaded to Curly Tales' official Instagram account. Here, too, the video caption said that Shinde and Jani ate a vegetarian meal.

According to news reports, Eknath Shinde conducted rallies in Nagpur on April 17 and 18, in the last phase of campaigning for Ramtek Lok Sabha constituency candidate Raju Parwe. This indicates that the clip in question was indeed shot during his recent visit to Nagpur, the same town mentioned as the location in Curly Tales' video description.  

The verdict

The viral picture was taken from a video uploaded by YouTuber Kamiya Jani and shows Eknath Shinde having a vegetarian meal, including different recipes prepared from an eggplant in Nagpur, Maharashtra. Therefore, we have marked the claim as false. 

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