An old video from Maharashtra where anti Pakistan slogans were raised during Ganpati Visarjan is being falsely shared as recent celebrations in the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) campus. BOOM was able to trace the video to a Ganesh visarjan (immersion) procession in Thane near Mumbai organised by a Hindu Jagruti Mandal.
The viral video shows a procession of people waving saffron coloured flags, dancing and raising expletive filled slogans against Pakistan. The slogans abusing Pakistan also demand supporters of Afzal Guru be sent to Pakistan and supporters of Pakistan be sent to the graveyard (kabristan). Another slogan states that Ram mandir will be built on its location and the saffron flag will be unfurled in Pakistan.
JNU was in the news recently, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 12, unveiled a statue of Swami Vivekananda statue on the campus. The video started going viral days after the inauguration.
Disclaimer: Video Contains Explicit Language
The same post is viral on Twitter with users praising that the saffron flag and anti-Pakistan slogans were raised at JNU.
BOOM was able to ascertain that the video is from the ritual of Ganpati immersion held by a group called the Hindu Jagruti Mandal in Thane near Mumbai. We reached out to an organiser of the Mandal who confirmed the video is not from JNU but from Naupada area in Thane.
A keyword search for the slogans heard showed results from YouTube with an account 'Limra Times' uploading the same video on October 4, 2018, describing it as a procession for Ganpati visarjan (immersion).
We further ran keyword searches using Marathi text on Facebook for the terms - 'Pakistan' 'Visarjan' 'Mumbai' 'Thane' in and found videos claiming the video was shot at a Ganapati visarjan organised by a Hindu Jagruti Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal in Naupada, Thane.
We found a Facebook live video uploaded on September 23, 2018 which shows the same setting as the viral video. While the Facebook live does not have the exact slogans, we noticed that the voice chanting the slogans first is the same as in the viral video. Listening to it closely, we found several similarities in the tone used for the slogans and the music in the video also matched the viral video.
The Facebook live video was uploaded with the caption 'Hindu Jagruti Visarjan Mirvanuk'
A search for Hindu Jagruti visarjan showed results for a Hindu Jagruti Mandal, a group that organises the Ganpati festival in an area of Thane distict, near Mumbai in Maharashtra. We had in January 2020 reached out to an organiser of the group who on a condition of anonymity, confirmed to BOOM that the clipping was from one of their Ganpati visarjan processions.
The organiser explained that the visarjan procession organised by the group is known to raise anti-Pakistan slogans every year. "It is an old video but I can't place the year as we raise such slogans during every Ganesh chaturthi procession."
When asked the reason for the slogans, the organizer at first said that the people who attend raise such slogans. He later said, "These slogans are being raised for years and lead to a community feeling among all the visarjan goers and Ganpati festival lovers."
VIDEO VIRAL WITH SEVERAL FALSE CLAIMS SINCE 2018
The video first went viral in 2018 with a false claim that it shows members of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad protesting at JNU.
It then went viral claiming Shiv Sena members held a protest at JNU, for the first time. The same video was viral in January this year, after protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act led to protests among students at the Jawaharlal Nehru University. The video was then being shared with a similar caption claiming the true supporters of Hinduism came together to raise the slogans in JNU. The video was also shared in 2019 with the false claim that it shows NRI Hindus raising anti-Pakistan slogans at the Howdy Modi event held in Texas, USA.
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