Sunday, July 25, 2021
Sunday, July 25, 2021
HomeFact checkViralNepal Did Not Shoot Down An Indian Air Force Helicopter Rudra

Nepal Did Not Shoot Down An Indian Air Force Helicopter Rudra

Claim 

A Twitter post claims that Nepal shot down an Indian Air Force helicopter Rudra when it entered their territory to conduct an airstrike. Further, the post claims that Nepal would not return the Indian pilot captured in this incident.  

The thirty-second video (without audio) accompanied with this post has been circulating on social media with similar claims. You can see examples below: 

Fact Check 

The video with the claim shows a helicopter shot down mid-air and blowing up in massive flames. 

This claim begins to make its rounds on social media after Nepal sets up six new border outposts following a rift in relations with New Delhi. This comes after India inaugurated a road connecting Lipulekh Pass with Dharchula town in Pithoragarh district. 

Nepal’s department of foreign affairs assures that Nepal’s territory issue with India has nothing to do with China. 

A reverse image search on Yandex.com of one of the frames in the video led us to a July 2019 Twitter post which associates a similar video to Syria. 

Taking cue from the above Twitter posts, we perform a keyword search on Google which leads us to multiple sources referring to the video in context to Syrian Air Force helicopter being shot down by rebels in eastern Idlib. 

The Telegraph posted a forty-nine second video in 2012 titled “Syrian rebels shoot down helicopter.” 

Another video uploaded by On Demand News on their Youtube channel in 2012 describes a similar video stating “Amateur video purports to show a Syrian military helicopter exploding over the city of Idlib after being shot down by rebels.”

The video in the claim and the ones linked above from The Telegraph and On Demand News have the same Free Syrian Army logo on the top left corner of the frame. See below: 

The screenshot on top is from the video in the claim. The bottom image is from the 2012 On Demand News video.
The screenshot on top is from the video in the claim. The bottom image is from the 2012 On Demand News video.

In 2012, The Guardian had reported on the same incident. In its description it says, 

“Video obtained from social media purports to show a Syrian army helicopter being shot down in the Syrian province of Idlib. The helicopter spirals to the ground before it explodes. The footage has not been independently verified. Tough battles were reported on Wednesday between Free Syrian Army brigades and the Syrian army in the province”

Syrian army helicopter shot down in Idlib, 2012.
Syrian army helicopter shot down in Idlib, 2012

You can read about this claim in our Hindi fact check here

Conclusion

The Twitter post claiming that Nepal shot down an Indian Air Force helicopter Rudra and captured an Indian pilot is false. The video posted along with the claim is in fact from 2012 and shows a Syrian helicopter shot mid-air in Idlib.

Tools Used

  • Yandex
  • Google advanced search
  • Twitter advanced search 

Result: False

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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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