The Hijab row that started in Karnataka last month has spilled over to West Bengal. Last week, a school in Murshidabad was vandalised by the locals after its headmaster asked girls to not wear hijab or burqa in school. Soon after, a video has been doing the rounds on social media claiming to show police crackdown on the pro-Hijab protesters in Bengal’s Murshidabad. However, Newschecker found the claim to be false.
In the 22 seconds clip, police officers can be seen dragging a group of people including burqa-clad women, who can be seen sitting on a main road holding placards. Twitter users shared the video claiming to show the ‘brutal’ behaviour of the police in Murshidabad.
We found the video on Instagram and Facebook as well
The headmaster of the Bahutali High School in Murshidabad’s Suti allegedly warned that the names of those wearing hijab or burqa to classes would be removed from the school registry. Following this, a group of locals, including the guardians of the students, assembled around the school and vandalised the school property. The police, in an attempt to pacify the situation, fired tear gas shells at the protestors. At least 18 people have been arrested in the matter so far.
The Hijab row that originated at a government college in Karnataka’s Udupi last month, after girls were barred from attending classes for wearing Hijab, has snowballed to the streets with the entry of the ‘Saffron-shawl soldiers’. The ‘Hijab Vs Saffron Shawl’ controversy has become the new favourite of the fake news peddlers. Over the past month, Newschecker debunked many misinformation regarding the ongoing protests in Karnataka. You can read our fact checks here, here and here.
Also Read: Explained: Why Has Karnataka Shutdown Educational Institutions Over The Hijab Row?
To verify if the video showed police crackdown on protesters in Murshidabad, Newschecker began by carefully analysing the clip. At 8 seconds, we spotted a poster with the letters ‘NEP’ written on it. Our Bengali team also confirmed that the text written on the poster was not in Bengali script.
Taking a clue, we conducted Google reverse image search for the keyframes of the video along with the keyword search for ‘NEP’ and found a YouTube video, dated September 16, 2021, uploaded on a channel called ‘RTSH Live – Right To Speak Hosapete’ with the title ‘Campus Front Protest Against NEP | VidhanSaudha Gherau Bang Police Brutally Lathi Charge on Students.’
At 38 seconds, the same frame as seen in the viral video, where police officers can be seen dragging the burqa-clad protesters, can be seen. The description of the video reads, “The charging & detention of Campus Front Karnataka activist’s while staging march to Vidhana Soudha demanding to withdraw NEP, is highly condemnable. Campus Front will continue its struggle until the government withdraws the NEP, ignoring its communal stance.”
Newschecker further looked up keywords ‘Police lathi-charge on students protests against NEP’ on YouTube. We found a video uploaded by a verified channel called ‘SahilOnline TV news’ on September 15, 2021 with the title ‘Bengaluru: Police resort to lathi-charge on students protesting against National Education Policy.’
At the counters of 2:03 minutes, we spotted the viral clip being circulated with the claim to show the police crackdown on protesters in West Bengal’s Murshidabad.
We also came across a tweet, dated September 14, 2021, which carried the viral clip with the caption, “These visuals project an extremely prejudiced and negative view of the Karnataka Police. Hope the higher-ups are taking note of it.” The video was posted on the Twitter account of Kaneez Fatima, MLA, Kalaburagi North Constituency, Karnataka.
Several news outlets had reported the incident. According to a report by The Hindu, dated September 15, 2021, “Hundreds of students representing the Campus Front of India, Karnataka, were caned and detained by the police when they tried to march towards Vidhana Soudha to protest against the National Education Policy during the Assembly session.”
You can read news reports on this incident here, here and here.
The viral video claiming to show recent police crackdown on protesters in West Bengal’s Murshidabad is actually from an anti-NEP protest in Bengaluru in September 2021.
Result: False Context/False
YouTube Channel Of RTSH Live – Right To Speak Hosapete
YouTube Channel Of SahilOnline TV news
Twitter Account Of Kaneez Fatima
If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044 or email us at [email protected]. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form.