A six-and-a-half year old disturbing video showing piles of corpses stacked against a wall is being shared with a false claim that it shows COVID-19 deaths at Osmania General Hospital in Hyderabad, Telangana.
The 90-second-long viral video shows several bodies wrapped in white cloth and stacked against a wall. In a voice-over in local Hyderabadi dialect, a man says 'When the soul of a human being departs, it's important that the body is disposed off in an honourable way whatever be his religion. But the way Hindu dead bodies lying in the mortuary of Hyderabad's Osmania hospital is being ignored, is deplorable. There are around 140 unclaimed bodies at the morgue in Osmania hospital waiting for their last rites.'
For the next few seconds the voice-over goes on to claim that since the last rites of non-Muslim dead bodies have not been performed, it has inconvenienced the hospital staff as well as patients and their attendants.
The video is being shared at a time when Coronavirus related cases in India is nearing the 5 lakh mark.
The clip has been shared with a caption reading '#Osmania Hospital Ka Ye Haal Hai Corona Ke Died Body's Ko Lekar Is Virus Ko Mazak Mat Samjo Pls'.
Watch the viral video below and check its archived version here.
BOOM performed a keyword search with the caption given with the video and found that the same clip has been shared from multiple Facebook profiles. The video has a logo of IndToday on the top right.
We then searched YouTube with the keyword Ind Today and found the channel. The video was shared on the channel in December 2013 with the headline 'Unclaimed bodies pile up at OGH mortuary | Hyderabad Osmania General Hospital'.
Watch the original video below.
The description with the video claims that the bodies shown in the clip are unclaimed bodies which have piled up due to delay in shifting them from the mortuary.
BOOM also checked the Facebook page of IndToday channel and found a clarification on the viral clip.
The Facebook post states that the video was uploaded on the YouTube page of IndToday on December 25, 2013.
BOOM then contacted Syed Ghouse Mohiuddin, the man who operates the YouTube channel. Mohiuddin confirmed that the video was old and had been recorded at Osmania General Hospital in Hyderabad.
"The video is six year old and was recorded at Osmania General Hospital. A new mortuary was being constructed at the OGH. The bodies were later removed and the story was widely reported back then," Mohiuddin told BOOM. The video has been revived on June 24, he added.
BOOM also asked him how the outlet was able to identify the religion of those dead. Mohiuddin told us that the unclaimed bodies are identified before performing their last rites. "Several bodies had been identified and the unidentified one were lying there," he told BOOM.
We also contacted OGH superintendent Doctor B Nagender who told us that the video is old. "Moreover, COVID-19 bodies are put in body bags and not disposed off like this," Nagender told BOOM.
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