A photo of woman seated on the floor with a row of police persons standing above her, is being shared with a false claim that she is Vaishali Yadav, daughter of a Samajwadi Party leader from Uttar Pradesh, who recorded a video seeking the government's help in getting out of Ukraine.
Yadav has been in news after an appeal video she made recently went viral with social media users claiming that she staged the video at behest of her father, and has been detained by UP police.
BOOM spoke to the girl's father and found that she was stranded in Ukraine and had returned home safely on March 3. He rubbished the viral claims. We also spoke to UP police who refuted the claims. We found that the photo is unrelated and does not show Vaishali Yadav.
Amid the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, thousands of Indian students stuck in the country have sought help from Indian authorities. According to a news report published in the Indian Express on March 4, 2022, around 17,000 Indians have already been evacuated from Ukraine. The image is viral in this backdrop.
A Hindi caption with a Facebook post sharing the picture translates to 'UP Police is the fastest. Gram pradhan daughter of Hardoi's Samajwadi party leader, Vaishali Yadav, who made a fake appeal video from Ukraine rescued by UP police'.
(Hindi: यूपी पुलिस सबसे तेज।।।। यूपी पुलिस द्वारा यूक्रेन से रेस्क्यू की गयी फर्जी वीडियो बनाने वाली यूपी हरदोई के समाजवादी नेता की ग्राम प्रधान बेटी वैशाली यादव)
The picture has been shared by multiple accounts with similar captions.
The image is viral on Twitter too.
Earlier, an appeal video of Vaishali Yadav had gone viral with false captions claiming that she had made the video from her home to malign Modi government's image.
Media head of Bharatiya Janata Party, Delhi, Navin Kumar Jindal shared the video from his verified Twitter handle with a Hindi caption translating to 'Vaishali Yadav, daughter of SP leader Mahendra Yadav, made a video from her home at the behest of her father to defame the Modi government. Red cap means red alert'.
(Hindi: सपाई नेता महेंद्र यादव की पुत्री वैशाली यादव ने अपने पिता के कहने पर मोदी सरकार को बदनाम करने के लिए अपने घर से ही वीडियो बना दिया। लाल टोपी मतलब रेड अलर्ट)
The same video was tweeted by the Handle @DailyUpdates69 with a caption claiming 'Vaishali Yadav, Who shot a video, claiming she is a Medical Student stuck in Ukraine without any Help from Indian govt, detained from Hardoi by UP Police. After getting caught maligning India's image, She says I did on my Father Mahender Yadav's behest who is a Samajwadi Leader'.
Vaishali Yadav And Samajwadi Party Connection
BOOM did a keyword search with 'Vaishali Yadav' and found several news reports about the girl.
A report published in the Hindustan Times on March 2, 2022, identifies the girl in the viral video as Vaishali Yadav. The report states that Yadav's video appeal from Ukraine had landed her in trouble since she is the gram pradhan of Tera Pursaili village in Hardoi district of Uttar Pradesh.
Vaishali is a third year student of medicine in Ukraine.
According to the report, Vaishali's father Mahendra Yadav is a Samajwadi Party leader and a former block pramukh. Mahendra Yadav told Hindustan Times that Vaishali had come to Hardoi last year during which she contested and won the gram pradhan election. "He said Vaishali also took part in a Gram Sabha meeting," Hindustan Times reported.
According to a report in the Indian Express, Hardoi administration has given Vaishali Yadav a showcause notice, and is 'probing the functioning of the gram panchayat since the time she was elected'.
The report stated that since Yadav is an elected representative, a procedure will be followed according to the provisions given in the Panchayati Raj Act.
Claims Of Vaishali Yadav's Arrest: Fact Check
BOOM contacted the superintendent of police, Hardoi. The SP Office PRO told BOOM that the claims of Vaishali Yadav's arrest is fake. "When she was last contacted, she was in Ukraine. The claims of her arrest are fake," the PRO told BOOM.
We also found a statement of Hardoi SP Rajesh Dwivedi refuting the viral claim.
BOOM then contacted Vaishali Yadav's father Mahendra Yadav who rubbished the claims. He said that Vaishali returned to India safely on March 3 and there was no police action as the viral posts are claiming. Yadav also confirmed that Vaishali is the pradhan of Tera Pursaili village.
BOOM did a reverse image search on the viral picture and found a news report in Hindi daily Amar Ujala with a similar picture. The report identified the woman in picture as Kamala Chaudhary who was arrested in Nagaur, Rajasthan under Arms and IT Act.
BOOM did a keyword search on Twitter and found the same picture shared from the official Twitter handle of Nagaur police.
The accused had uploaded a video of herself firing a gun.