Photo From Bangladesh Of Namaz On The Road Falsely Viral As India

BOOM found that the photo is from Tongi, Bangladesh during the 2020 Biswa Ijtema annual religious gathering

Tarek Fatah, a Pakistani-born Canadian right-wing columnist shared a photo from Bangladesh showing people offering namaz in the middle of the road falsely claiming that the photo is from India.

In the photo, a large gathering of men can be seen offering namaz, with some standing on top of vehicles present on the road. The issue of namaz in open spaces has come to the limelight recently as right-wing groups started protesting in Gurgaon, Haryana, and have attempted to disrupt the congregational prayers of Muslims, every Friday.

Also Read: 'Aim Was To Stop Namaz': Gurgaon Protests Force Muslims To Abandon Prayer Sites

The photo was shared by Fatah with the caption, "Blocking traffic on a highway in India to perform Friday prayers . This doesn't seem to me as a prayer; it's a demonstration of numbers to intimidate others. Any attempt to ask them to move to designated prayer spaces will be labelled 'discrimination'."

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BOOM has previously fact-checked Fatah several times in the past for sharing misinformation.

The photo has since gone viral since with the same claim.

Also Read: No, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra Did Not Say Yoga In Parks Should Be Stopped


BOOM found that the viral photo is from Bangladesh taken in 2020 during the Biswa Ijtema religious congregation in Tongi, Gazipur.

Bishwa Ijtema,is one of the biggest annual gatherings of Muslims in Bangladesh with prayers held in a 160 acre field on the bank of the Turag river at Tongi, which is on the outskirt of Dhaka.

We also spotted 'BRTC' written on the double-decker bus in the photo, which stands for - Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation. The same type of double-decker bus with 'BRTC' logos can be seen in Bangladeshi news reports.

Taking a cue from this, we ran a search with the relevant keywords on the stock photo website Alamy and found the original photo, published in January 2020. The same vehicles can be seen with men performing namaz on top of vehicles. The caption of the photo reads, "Muslims are performing Jumma prayers at the Bishwa Ijtema, the second largest congregation of the world's Muslims after Hajj" with photo credit to Sheikh Mohammad Mahadi Hassan in January 2020.

The section marked in yellow is the cropped viral photo that is being shared on social media

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A comparison shows that the viral photo has been cropped from this photo.

Additionally, we also found another clearer photo on the stock photo website Fine Arts America from the same spot clicked by Azim Khan Ronnie, a photographer from Bangladesh.

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In this photo, boards in Bangla can be clearly seen. The text when translated from Bangla reads, "For Success of World Ijtema 2020. Mayor, Gazipur City Corporation."

BOOM reached out to Azim Khan Ronnie who confirmed that he clicked the photo during the Biswa Ijtema in Tongi, Gazipur, Bangladesh, in January 2020.

Claim :   Photo shows Muslims offering namaz on the road and blocking a highway in India
Claimed By :  Tarek Fatah
Fact Check :  False
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