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HomeFact checkImage Of Unmasked Tourists Violating Physical Distancing Norms Is From Uttarakhand’s Kempty...

Image Of Unmasked Tourists Violating Physical Distancing Norms Is From Uttarakhand’s Kempty Falls, Not Delhi

After a video of tourists seen flouting COVID-19 protocol in Uttarakhand’s Kempty Falls went viral on social media, a Twitter user shared a screenshot of it, attributing it to people of Delhi violating physical distancing norms.  

Viral image of unmasked tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand. Courtesy: Twitter @pratiba_sk
Viral image of unmasked tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand. Courtesy: Twitter @pratiba_sk

Posted on 8 July, the user’s tweet read, “Namaskar Sir ⁦@narendramodi Ji , the way people especially of Delhi are abusing Covid protocol, it’s evident 3rd wave is knocking the door. Government must ensure that all major hospitals like Apollo, Fortis, Max, Naryana, CAH, Etc are equipped with oxygen plants.”

An archived version of the tweet can be viewed here.

Also Read: COVID-19 Vaccines Don’t Give People Magnetic Power, False Claims Viral Online

Fact Check / Verification

On doing a reverse image search of the screenshot in context, we found similar stock images shot at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand under the “images” tab. 

Taken from a different angle, the image on Dreamstime.com is captioned, “Tourists having fun and beating summer heat at Kempty Falls near the popular Indian hill station Mussoorie.”

Screenshot of a stock image from Dreamstime.com of tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand
Screenshot of a stock image from Dreamstime.com of tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand

We found another image of Kempty Falls on Agefotostock.com titled, “Tourists having fun in Kempty Falls, Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India.”

The screenshot in the claim was taken from this video shared on Twitter with the caption, “With no #masks in sight, hundreds of tourists appeared to be #vacationing their ‘#pandemic’ troubles away at the Kempty falls in #Mussoorie.”

Soon after the video of unmasked tourists violating physical distancing norms went viral, news organisations including Jagran and Hindustan Times reported that the Uttarakhand government capped the limit of tourists to visit the Kempty Falls near Mussoorie.

“From now onwards, there would be a limit of 50 tourists who would be allowed to bathe at the waterfall for only 30 minutes. After the stipulated time, a hooter would be blown to signal the batch of tourists to come out. Once all of the 50 come out, the next batch of 50 would be allowed to go,” announced Iva Ashish Srivastava, District Magistrate, Tehri Garhwal, via Hindustan Times

Screenshot of a Hindustan Times article on a cap of 50 tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand amid COVID-19 violations
Screenshot of a Hindustan Times article on a cap of 50 tourists at Kempty Falls, Uttarakhand amid COVID-19 violations

An official at the Uttarakhand Tourism office confirmed that the viral video of unmasked tourists at Kempty Falls near Mussoorie is recent. The official also said that DM Ashish Srivastava has indeed capped the tourist limit to 50 at the Falls with other rules to be followed. 

Also Read: Six Months Old Image Showing Crowd Of People In Manali Viral As Recent

Conclusion

The image of unmasked tourists violating physical distancing norms is from Kempty Falls in Uttarakhand, not Delhi. 

Result: Misleading

Our Sources

Dreamstime.com: https://www.dreamstime.com/editorial-photography-tourists-bathing-kempty-falls-mussoorie-india-having-fun-beating-summer-heat-near-popular-indian-hill-station-image48899472

Agefotostock.com: https://www.agefotostock.com/age/en/details-photo/tourists-having-fun-in-kempty-falls-mussoorie-uttarakhand-india/PNM-pirm-20120516-st0001

Uttarakhand Tourism office: https://uttarakhandtourism.gov.in/

Twitter Post: https://twitter.com/InfobugI/status/1412806456613634049?s=20

Jagran English: https://english.jagran.com/india/day-after-viral-video-number-of-visitors-bathing-time-at-kempty-falls-capped-by-administration-details-10028971

Hindustan Times: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/50-tourists-to-be-allowed-at-uttarakhand-s-kempty-falls-following-covid-violations-101625819070276.html


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Nikita Vashisth
Nikita is a writer and editor for English fact-checking. She also leads projects to understand the misinformation and fake-news ecosystem—with an emphasis on data and psychology. Previously, she has worked with IndiaSpend, CNN-News18 and written for Citizen Matters and Mongabay-India on the environment, health, and politics. She’s a postgraduate of the Computational Journalism program at Cardiff University, Wales.

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