A morphed photograph of pro-Khalistan leader Amritpal Singh is circulating on social media with false claims that it shows the Waris Punjab De (WPD) chief disguising himself as a woman to flee from Punjab after the police launched a manhunt in search of him.
Punjab Police on Tuesday released a set of seven images of Amritpal Singh urging the general public to help them in their search stating that these are the different guises used by the Khalistan leader who has been at large for five days in a row. In the set of seven images, Singh can be seen sporting various turbans, beard and a clean shaven look.
BOOM found that the morphed photo of Singh, where he resembles a woman, is created through the application of a software on one of the clean shaven images of Singh released by Punjab Police.
The photo along with the other pictures of Singh is being shared with a Hindi caption that translates to, "As per the latest CCTV footage, fugitive Amritpal Singh has changed his attire from 'Nihang' to 'normal boy' wearing pants, shirt and fled on bike. If seen somewhere, immediately inform your nearest police station."
(Original Text in Hindi: लेटेस्ट सीसीटीवी फुटेज के अनुसार भगोड़े अमृतपाल सिंह ने 'निहंग' से 'सामान्य लड़के' के रूप में पैंट और शर्ट पहनकर अपनी पोशाक व रूप बदल लिया है और बाइक पर भाग गया। कहीं दिखे तो तुरंत अपने समीप के थाने में बताएं)
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Singh was last spotted on a CCTV footage, fleeing on a motorcycle. The vehicle has since been recovered near a canal in Jalandhar.
On Tuesday, Punjab Police released a set of photos of possible looks that Amritpal Singh might adopt to evade capture. This included photos showing him sporting a turban and a beard and images of him with cropped hair and without a turban. The set of images also included a doctored photo of him with a clean shaven look.
BOOM was able to ascertain that the same photograph was modified and created to make Singh resemble a woman in the viral photograph. ANI's tweets can be seen below.
Further, we also found a Facebook post carrying the viral photograph with a watermark of FaceApp, a photo and video editing application.
We then ran a reverse image search on the photograph and found a tweet by right wing Twitter handle Kreately who tweeted the same photograph on March 21. Kreately started the tweet as a joke, mischievously cropped the watermark of FaceApp with the image and captioned it as, "Guess who".
Below is Kreately's tweet without the watermark of FaceApp
We then used the photo of Amritpal Singh released by Punjab Police, where he can be seen in beard and clicking a mirror selfie with his earphones on and ran it through the FaceApp.
Using FaceApp, we were able to remove the beard from Singh's face and include long hair to the photo similar to the viral picture. The changes can be seen below.
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