A street play video from 2017 in Kerala is going viral with the false claim that the video shows the murder of an RSS worker. BOOM found that the claim is false, and the video is a street play based on the death of journalist Gauri Lankesh.
The video shows two men dragging a woman out of her car and shooting her when she resists. One of the men then addresses the crowd in Malayalam.
Journalist and activist Gauri Lankesh, known for her fierce criticism of the right-wing, was shot dead outside her home in Bengaluru on September 5, 2017.
The video is being shared with the caption to claim that it shows the murder of a woman RSS worker. It reads, "In Kerale a RSS Lady worker was shot dead by Ms... enough is enough... check it out"
BOOM had previously fact-checked this video when it went viral in the backdrop of Gauri Lankesh's murder.
According to The Indian Express, Gauri Lankesh was allegedly murdered by the Sanatan Sanstha, a radical right-wing group. The report, while quoting the chargesheet also said that Lankesh's murder was allegedly being planned for five years.
The prime accused in the murder, Parshuram Waghmare, allegedly had ties with right-wing groups such as the Sanathan Sanstha and Sri Ram Sena. During an SIT investigation, Waghmare allegedly admitted that he carried out Lankesh's assassination at someone else's behest because of her vilification of Hindu sentiments.
Apart from this, Sanatan Sanstha has been allegedly involved in the murders of social activists and journalists such as Narendra Dabholkar to Govind Pansare and MM Kalburgi.
BOOM heard the dialogue exchanged between the actors in the street play and translated it from Malayalam to English. Read here:
Attacker: Kill her!
Main character: She fought and stood against the RSS. Spoke against them. Finally, she was killed by the RSS. Catch her and tie her up.
Why? Why did you kill this poor journalist?
Attacker: We, the RSS, the patriots.
Main character: Did you hear them? Who betrayed the freedom struggle, who shot Mahatma Gandhi. They are RSS. They are dangerous. Silence is dangerous. This silence is dangerous even after fascism has entered your kitchen.
Audience: Yes, silence is dangerous.
Main character: RSS, who wiped out around 2000 minority communities from the soil of Gujarat. RSS, who killed Kalburgi, Govind Pansare. RSS, who destroys those who write and speak. They are a menace.
We also found the same video uploaded on September 9, 2017 on a Facebook page named CPIM Cyber Commune.
The video is shared with a caption in Malayalam which translates to, "A street play condemning the RSS based on the murder of Gauri Lankesh, who was shot by the RSS."
(Original caption: RSS വെടിവെച്ച് കൊന്ന ഗൗരി ലങ്കേഷിന്റെ കൊലപാതകത്തെ ആസ്പദമാക്കി ആര്എസ്എസ്സിനെ ജനകീയ വിജാരണ ചെയ്യുന്ന തെരുവ് നാടകം.)
The video went viral on Facebook with the same caption.
BOOM looked for media reports in this regard and found a report by The News Minute dated September 13, 2017, which stated that the viral video was from a street play based on the September 5 murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh, in which the RSS was allegedly held responsible.
According to reports, this street play was performed by the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) at Kalikavu in Malappuram district.
On the other hand, a News 18 report published on 13 September, 2017 quoted the Democratic Youth Federation of India as saying that the video was part of a street play organised at Manjeri in Malappuram district of Kerala.
According to the statement of DYFI President PA Mohammad Riyas in this report, their intention was to expose the RSS and its attack on freedom of expression.
To get more information about this video, we contacted the Malappuram district secretary of DYFI. Speaking to BOOM, he informed that this street play took place in 2017 at Kalikavu in Malappuram district. He also revealed that the branch secretary of DYFI was playing the female character and the dialogue delivery was done by the local secretary.
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