A video of what appears to show prime minister Narendra Modi waving at an empty field after he deboards a helicopter in West Bengal is edited and viral with misleading claims on social media.
The audio of the original clip where Vande Mataram chants can be heard in the background has also been removed and overlaid with a Hindi film track to claim that PM Modi waved at an empty field for photo-ops. The clip is also of a lower resolution, making it seem like the crowds standing at a distance are not present.
In the original video on Bharatiya Janata Party's official Facebook page a crowd is visible across the fencing of the field.
The edited clip is viral as elections are being held in Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Puducherry. The prime minister is currently campaigning in Kerala and Tamil Nadu which will go to polls on April 6.
The video was tweeted and later deleted by the official handle of Congress.
National coordinator of All India Congress Committee's social media wing Lavanya Ballal has tweeted the video with a caption reading 'Waving at imaginary people is the latest trend. It's his STRENEAH'
Two versions of the video are viral now, one overlaid with a Bollywood song, the other one where the background noise of crowds cheering has been muted in an attempt to support the claim that Modi was waving at an empty ground.
A caption with the video featuring the film song reads, 'The joker does not need crowds in his election rallies anyway. The reason being EVM = Every Vote to Modi'.
Another Twitter user has shared an audio less version of the same video with a sarcastic caption 'Those who can't see the crowd go for eye check up'.
The video is viral both on Twitter and Facebook.
The video is viral on Facebook with similar captions in both Hindi and Bangla
BOOM did a reverse image search on a screenshot from the viral video which led us to a Facebook post by BJP Jaynagar Bidhansabha (বিজেপি জয়নগর বিধানসভা) featuring the longer version of the video.
In the clearer version of the video, a crowd is clearly visible at the far end of the ground. The crowd cheers on as the PM waves at it before moving towards his vehicle.
The video then jumps to another scene where Modi can be seen greeting the crowd from his vehicle.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had addressed rallies in West Bengal's Uluberia and Jaynagar on April 1.
Taking cue from the captions, we checked the social media handles of BJP. We found the same video uploaded on BJP's official Facebook page on April 1.
A heavy crowd can be seen cheering the prime minister when he greets it.
The caption with the video reads 'Scenes from PM Narendra Modi's rally in Jaynagar have the unmissable message of Ashol Poriborton in Bengal. Scenes from PM Narendra Modi's rally in Jaynagar have the unmissable message of Ashol Poriborton in Bengal'.
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