2022 video of an Eid gathering wrongly linked to recent unrest in Uttarakhand

By: Chandan Borgohain
February 9 2024

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2022 video of an Eid gathering wrongly linked to recent unrest in Uttarakhand

Screenshots of social media posts sharing the viral video with misleading claims. (Source: X/Facebook/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict Misleading

The video has been online since May 2022. According to news reports and the police, it shows people gathered to celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr in Haridwar.

Claim ID 56ea0524

Unrest gripped the north Indian town of Haldwani, Uttarakhand, on February 8 over the demolition of a mosque and a madrasa (an Islamic center for free elementary education) during an encroachment drive by the authorities, leading to the death of two civilians. In the wake of the violence, social media users are sharing visuals of clashes and mayhem, claiming to show the prevailing unrest in the Himalayan state.

What is the claim?

A video showing a large crowd of people on a street has been widely circulating on social media. The video seemingly features a large gathering of Muslim men donning skull caps. Laced with communal undertones, several users shared the video linking it to the recent unrest in Haldwani.

Sharing the video on X, a user wrote, "20 years ago there was a 1% muslim population in #Haldwani. Now its about 20% Wake up hindus before it's too late for you. #Uttarakhand (sic.)" The post (archived here) had garnered over 95,500 views at the time of writing.

Moreover, the video has also been linked to the contentious Uniform Civil Code (UCC) Bill passed by the Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly on February 7. Sharing the video, one Facebook user wrote (in Assamese) that Uttarakhand was set on flames by Muslim protesters who oppose the UCC bill. Some users also shared the viral video along with visuals of the recent violence in Haldwani. 

A screenshot of a Facebook post sharing the viral video. (Source: Facebook/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the video is not recent. The video was captured in May 2022 and shows an Eid gathering in Haridwar. 

What did we find?

A reverse image search on one of the keyframes of the video first led us to an X post shared on May 5, 2022, by a user named Dr. Vijay Sharma. According to the post, originally written in Hindi, the video shows a gathering of people after offering namaz (Muslim prayer) at Jwalapur Eidgah in Haridwar. The post, however, propagated Islamophobic and sectarian sentiments, and a link to the same has not been included as part of this story.

We also found a Facebook post from May 3, 2022, that shared the now-viral clip. It may be noted that in 2022, Eid-ul-Fitr began on the evening of May 2 and ended on the evening of May 3.

Taking these details as a cue, we performed a Google search using relevant keywords in Hindi and came across a video report by local news outlet Bharatvarsh24x7 News. According to the report, thousands offered Eid-ul-Fitr prayers at the Jwalapur Eidgah in Haridwar, Uttarakhand. We noted that the structure of the gate and the wall seen in the report, which was shared on May 3, 2022, match those captured in the viral video.

Comparison of visuals from the viral clip and the Bharatvarsh24x7 News video report. (Source: X/Bharatvarsh24x7 News/Modified by Logically Facts)

We also successfully geolocated the Jwalapur Eidgah in Haridwar and confirmed that the viral video was shot at the same location. 

An officer from the Haridwar police station also confirmed to Logically Facts that the viral video shows the Jwalapur Eidgah and was taken in May 2022. The officer, who did not wish to be identified, also directed us to a comment made by Haridwar Police on an X post. "An old video has been going viral on social media and is said to be related to the UCC. The video is from "Eidgah Jwalapur, Haridwar" and was on the occasion of Eid in 2022 (translated from Hindi)," Haridwar Police wrote in response to a post made by 'Kreately.in'—a right-wing account known for spreading misinformation. 

Haridwar Police confirmed that the video is from May 2022. (Source: X/Screenshot)

The verdict

The viral video predates the recent violence in Uttarakhand. It has been online since May 2022 and shows people at the Jwalapur, Eidgah in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, during the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr. Therefore, we have marked this claim as misleading.

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