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An Unrelated Image Shared With Actual News About Official Registration Of The South African Satanic Church

Co-founder of the SASC Riaan Swiegelaar says, “Satanism is, arguably, the most misunderstood religion practiced in South Africa today.”

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Claim 

We recently received a message on our Whatsapp verification helpline number with an image claiming that South Africa registered its first official Satanic Church. The lengthy message also includes other related details. 

Image shared with the claim

We found this claim with the same image we received being shared widely on Twitter and Facebook

A Youtube channel by the name King ViewFinder posted a video version of the claim with its contents identical to that in the Whatsapp message we received. 

Factcheck

On 5 June 2020, we received a Whatsapp message claiming that South Africa registered its first official Satanic Church. The Church was launched earlier this year in February with an aim to educate the public on the Satanic Religious Board as well as to address common misconceptions related to Satanic practices. The Whatsapp message goes on to detail other aspects of the Church including its founders, council, social media, and other related information. 

Through Google Advanced Search we came across many news organisations in South Africa that have reported on the registration of this church. 

Further, we got in touch with the founders of the South African Satanic Church (SASC) who confirmed with us via email about the content of the Whatsapp message we received as well as the founding and registration of the SASC. In his response, Co-founder Riaan Swiegelaar directed us to the original article and radio interview he thinks the Whatsapp message is based on. View the article below.

‘Hail, Satan!’ – former Christian pastor registers Satanic Church in SA

Christians believe in the Devil. Satanists don’t. Lester Kiewit interviews Riaan Swiegelaar, cofounder of the SA Satanic Church. Satanism is, arguably, the most misunderstood religion practised in South Africa today. For one, practitioners don’t believe in Satan, as most Christians do.

The above news story details how the SASC came to be and how “Satanism is, arguably, the most misunderstood religion practiced in South Africa today.” The SA Satanic Church conducts services, Satanic Bible study, and performs community service related to women’s rights and animal welfare, states the article.

Though Swiegelaar, in his response to us, clarifies that contrary to the claim made in the Whatsapp message about his parents supporting him he said, “if you listen to the radio interview; I indeed said “We agree to disagree”.”

He also clarifies that in his interview he did mention that they are a religious organisation, educating the public on what Satanism is but, he “never mentioned anything like a “board”,” as claimed in the Whatsapp message. 

You can watch the co-founders of the SASC Adri Norton and Riaan Swiegelaar discussing questions that Satanists are faced with on their official Youtube channel below.

Things not to say to a Satanist

Adri and Riaan discuss the questions Satanist are faced with while explaining more about what Satanism actually is.

We also sourced the contents of the Whatsapp message to a news report written by Ellen Mubwanda and published on the Mail & Telegraph, a registered media organisation with the Zimbabwe Media Commission. 

Regarding the image that was sent to us with this Whatsapp claim, Swiegelaar said that they didn’t supply the image and think it’s of the Satanic Temple, a United States-based organisation. We independently searched for the image source and found that it was included in multiple news reports claiming it is from a ritual performed by congregants of the Seattle-based Satanic Temple of Washington. The linked news reports source the image to Cameron Sheppard, WNPA News Service. According to these reports, the image shows Angel, the ritual guild leader of the Satanic Temple of Washington State, leading the procession up the capitol steps. 

Amid pious protesters, Satanists conduct a ritual on the Capitol steps | 2020 Legislative Session | Bainbridge Island Review

Angel, who goes by one name and is the ritual guild leader for the Satanic Temple of Washington State, leads the procession up the capitol steps as part of their ritual.

Another fact-checking organization has debunked this claim. 

Conclusion

After getting confirmation from one of the co-founders of the South African Satanic Church and reading multiple news reports on the same, we can confirm that the SASC was indeed launched early this year and is now officially registered. Although the image we received with the Whatsapp message is not related to the SASC. It’s from a Satanic organisation based in the United States. 

Tools Used

  • Twitter advanced search
  • Youtube
  • Google advanced search

Result: Partly False 

(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

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Fact check

Video Of Man Urging Muslim Community To Increase Representation Is Not Himalaya’s Founder

Himalaya Drug Company’s founder M Manal passed away in 1986. Man in the viral video is Naqi Ahmed Nadwi, administrator at Maaden, Riyadh.

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Naqi Ahmed Nadwi's video shared as founder of Himalaya

A video of a man speaking in Urdu and encouraging the Muslim community to increase their representation in professions such as administrative services, health department, judiciary, and others has been shared by many social media users recently. 

Users have claimed the man in the video to be the owner of the Himalayan Drug Company, Mohammed Manal. These claims also advise people against the use of Himalaya products. 

One such example of the claim reads, “We are all proud of Indian ‘Himalayan Drug Company’ but see the mentality of it’s owner Mohammed Manal and think twice before using the products.”

You can read similar claims with the 44-second video below. 

Fact Check/ Verification

Using keyframes from the video, we did a reverse search on Yandex.com. This led us to a Youtube video in which the same man was seen speaking on CAA and NRC. A Google search of keywords from this video led us to Naqi Ahmed Nadwi’s Facebook page—the man speaking in the video

On 22 August, Nadwi posted a video on his Facebook page with an Urdu caption:

 بابری مسجد کا انہدام اوراسکی جگہ پر رام مندر کا قیام تاریخ ہند کا ایک ایسا موڑ ہے جس کے بارے میں مسلمانوں کو سنجیدگی سے غور کرنا ہوگا!

It translates to, “The demolition of Babri Masjid and the establishment of Ram Mandir in its place is a twist in the history of India which Muslims must consider seriously!” 

The video clip included in the initial claim was taken from this 12-minute video by Nadwi. You can watch the clip from the 11:54 timestamp. 

As per Nadwi’s LinkedIn profile, he is an Administrator at Maaden CEO Office in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. 

Naqi Ahmed Nadwi’s LinkedIn profile

Founder of Himalaya

An image of Himalaya Drug Company’s founder, M Manal posted on the company’s website clearly shows he is not the same man as claimed in the initial tweets. Also, M Manal passed away in 1986. The current CEO of the company is Philipe Haydon.

Photograph of M Manal, Founder of Himalaya Drug Company on its website
Photograph of M Manal, Founder of Himalaya Drug Company on its website

On 27 September, the company tweeted a clarification on the claim calling it baseless rumours.

Conclusion 

Tweets claiming the video of a man urging the Muslim community to increase their representation in sectors such as police force, to be the founder of Himalaya Drug Company are misleading. The man in the video is Naqi Ahmed Nadwi, Administrator at Maaden CEO Office in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. 

Result: Misleading 

Our Sources

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5mtqEf5FeFg

Naqi Ahmed Nadwi’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Naqi-Ahmed-Nadwi-Page-105822587910985

Naqi Ahmed Nadwi’s LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/naqi-ahmed-nadwi-64b32446/

Himalaya Drug Company: https://himalayawellness.in/pages/our-story

Himalaya Global Holdings: http://www.himalayaglobalholdings.com/abouthimalaya/milestones.htm

Himalaya CEO Philipe Haydon: https://www.linkedin.com/in/philipe-haydon-46b13515/?originalSubdomain=in

Himalaya India: https://twitter.com/HimalayaIndia/status/1310136642380861440?s=20

Prathmesh Kunt contributed towards research for this fact check. 


If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044 or email us at checkthis@newschecker.in. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form.

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PM Modi’s 2017 Ro-Ro Ferry Initiative Shared With Braemar Cruise Video From Greece

PM Modi’s 2017 Ro-Ro ferry initiative was suspended due to dredging issues in Dahej last year.

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PM Modi’s 2017 Ro-Ro Ferry Initiative Shared With Braemar Cruise Video From Greece

A Twitter user claims that the Indian prime minister Narendra Modi started a ferry service connecting Bhavnagar and Bharuch districts in Gujarat. It further claims the distance between the districts is 350km by road and 32km by sea. It is accompanied by a 59-second video which shows a cruise ship passing through a narrow waterway. 

The tweet aims to appreciate PM Modi’s initiative to reduce travel time between the two districts, while also claiming the ship’s capacity to hold 50 trucks, 60 buses, 200 cars, 350 motorcycles and 600 people at once. 

Posted on 28 September, the tweet written in Hindi when translated reads, “Bhavnagar to Bharuch road has a distance of 350 kilometers, and by sea route it is 32 kilometers, and by this sea route, the Prime Minister has started a service by the ship. The capacity of this ship is 50 trucks, 60 buses, 200 cars at once. 350 motorcycles, 600 people, and time in just half an hour”

Other social media users have shared similar claims. 

Fact Check/ Verification

Through a reverse image search of the claim (tweet) on InVid, a video verification tool, we came across an October 2019 tweet by @Amazing_Greece which reads, “MS Braemar is the largest ship which has been through the Canal of Corinth #Greece

Taking cue from this we did a keyword (ms braemar corinth canal) search on Google which led us to an October 2019 Youtube video. Posted by the account Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines the video’s description reads, Braemar cruising through the Corinth Canal.”

Fred Olsen’s video shows keyframes similar to the video in the claim. It also shows the same surrounding scenic views of the Corinth Canal. Located in Greece, this canal is one of the oldest man-made canals in the world. 

The Telegraph UK published an article on it in October 2019 titled, “The inside story of a record-breaking cruise through the Corinth Canal – a journey that was two years in the planning.” As did the Daily Mail UK

PM Modi’s Ro-Ro Ferry Initiative

As for the other part of the claim which says PM Modi started a ship service connecting Bhavnagar and Bharuch districts in Gujarat, it is true, but old news. 

In October 2017, PM Modi inaugurated the first phase of Roll-On-Roll-off (Ro-Ro) ferry service between Bharuch’s Dahej and Bhavnagar’s Ghogha. This was just weeks before the state assembly elections. 

As per a video shared by PM Modi in 2017, this ferry would reduce travel time between the districts from eight hours to one hour (360km to 31km). Further, the ferry vessel shall transport 70-80 trucks or 100 light-weight motor vehicles with 500 passengers. You can read other tweets by PM Modi on the same occasion here

After the ferry was suspended due to dredging issues in Dahej,  the Adani firm recently won the bid to provide Ro-Ro ferry service between Hazira in Surat and Ghoga in Bhavnagar district. 

Conclusion

Our research makes it clear that the ferry service connecting Bhavnagar and Bharuch districts in Gujarat is not a new or recent initiative. Also contrary to the distance claimed, the Ro-Ro ferry reduced it from 360km to 31km. The ferry’s capacity figures are misleading as well. Finally, the accompanying video is in fact of the Braemar cruise in Corinth Canal, Greece. 

Result: Misleading

Our Sources

Amazing Greece: https://twitter.com/Amazing_Greece/status/1182560844762308608?s=20

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPkrmTELao8

Marine Insight: https://www.marineinsight.com/know-more/the-corinthian-canal-a-narrow-man-made-shipping-canal/

The Telegraph UK: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/cruises/articles/corinth-canal-largest-cruise-ship-braemar/

Daily Mail: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7563541/Biggest-cruise-ship-squeeze-Corinth-Canal-Greece-makes-just-3ft-spare.html

Financial Express: https://www.financialexpress.com/photos/business-gallery/901833/narendra-modi-gujarat-visit-pm-inaugrates-ghogha-dahej-ro-ro-ferry-service-in-bhavnagar-see-spectacular-photos/5/

Times of India: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/rajkot/pm-modi-inaugurates-his-dream-project/articleshow/61177505.cms

PM Narendra Modi: https://twitter.com/search q=ghogha%20dahej%20ferry%20(from%3Anarendramodi)&src=typeahead_click

Indian Express: https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/ahmedabad/adani-firm-wins-ro-ro-terminal-bid-for-hazira-offers-lease-of-rs-1-month-6489009/


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2016 Video Of A Siren Shared With Misleading Claims Related To Ongoing India-China Dispute In Ladakh

The video in context was posted on Youtube in 2016 with the description, “The largest air-raid siren in the world.”

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2016 video of a defender siren shared with misleading claims

A Twitter user claimed that the Chinese army used a loudspeaker at the Indian military camp in Ladakh causing vomiting and injury to the ear drums of Indian soldiers. The tweet is accompanied by a 30-second video which shows a rotating siren with blaring sound. 

Posted from the Twitter handle @ichinaTV on 24 September, the tweet reads, “#china #India The Chinese army uses this super loud speaker to play music at the Indian military camp in Ladakh! A large number of Indian soldiers’ eardrums were injured and vomiting”

The same user retweeted the above tweet on 28 September writing, “Because China and India have signed an agreement to prohibit the use of guns within two kilometers of LAC! Therefore, China has developed this sonic weapon. The video is only a low-power display, and the actual volume and audio are more intense!”

Fact Check/ Verification 

Through a reverse image search on InVid, a video verification tool, we came across a Youtube video titled, “LIONKING Defender Siren” posted in March, 2016. 

InVid search result of "Lion King Defender Siren"
InVid search result of “Lion King Defender Siren”

The video was published by an account named Elsa Chen and has over 47 lakh views till date. It’s description reads, “The largest air-raid siren in the world. Produced by Taizhou LionKing Signal Co.,Ltd. websites: http://www.lionking-firerescue.com. Email: elsa@lionking-firerescue.com

The link in the video’s description led us to a website named Lion King. According to the website, “Taizhou Lion King Signal Co., Ltd. is a professional company specialized in making various sirens, rescue air cushions, PPV blowers,Smoke Ejectors and Line throwers.”

Listed in the products section of the website, a product called “Defender Siren” looked similar to the one from the claim. 

Defender Siren, a product by Taizhou Lion King Signal Co., Ltd.
Defender Siren, a product by Taizhou Lion King Signal Co., Ltd.

The video from the claim was shared by another user in September, 2017 though with a different audio in the background. 

The claim in context was shared days after Chinese troops played Punjabi songs at their forward posts in Ladakh amid the ongoing territorial dispute. At the time, the Indian soldiers were known to be at Finger 4, a height overlooking the positions of the Peoples Liberation Army. 

On 17 September, Hindustan Times reported that “according to a former Indian Army chief, the PLA used the same loudspeaker tactics in 1962 skirmishes in the western and eastern sectors as well during the 1967 Nathu La skirmish.” 

You can read our Hindi fact check on this claim here

Conclusion 

Our research makes it clear that the Chinese army did not use a loudspeaker at the Indian military camp in Ladakh recently. The video in the claim is from 2016 and shows a product called Defender Siren.

Result: Misleading

Our Sources

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrSSArQoFWc

Lion King-FireRescue website: http://www.lionking-firerescue.com/


If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044 or email us at checkthis@newschecker.in. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form.

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