The Himalaya group found itself in the centre of controversy on Thursday, when it started trending on Twitter India, as several users called for a boycott of the products over the company’s ‘halal certification’. The posts, going viral on social media with an image allegedly showing a notice in the company’s Pune office, claimed that the products manufactured by the group were halal certified, and asked others to boycott Himalaya products over the same. In this context, a video showing a man addressing a large assembly, exhorting them to boycott Reliance and Patanjali products is also being widely shared by many social media users, identifying the man as the ‘owner of Himalaya company.’ Newschecker has found this claim to be false.
In the video, the man can be heard saying “Change all the mobile phone (connections) that are associated with Reliance. Get any other alternative- be it Idea or Vodafone or Airtel. But we have to hit Reliance. So stop using Reliance products. In addition, stop buying petrol from Reliance petrol pumps. Do not buy any products that are being sold by Reliance.”
The man is also heard talking about the Patanjali group. “Similarly, products sold by Ramdev. More than 60% of these products are waste and useless. What else does he do but make people eat cow dung? Stop using Ramdev’s products. More than half of the money he makes goes into making weapons for RSS,” the man is heard saying.
The video is also viral on Facebook, with many users sharing the video with similar claims.
Fact Check/ Verification
To verify the authenticity of the claim, Newschecker analysed the viral video and found that the video carried the water mark of ‘Times Express’. The video also shows a crowd of burqa class women and several posters that carry the words ‘Repeal NRC’. These point out that the video is from protests against the Centre’s controversial Citizenship Amendment Act and the NRC exercise.
Upon further research on YouTube using related keywords in Hindi, we found a video uploaded on January 25, 2020 on the official channel of Times Express, which was similar to the video that is going viral on social media. According to the description of the YouTube video, the person delivering the speech is the well known lawyer Bhanu Pratap Singh (Advocate Supreme Court of India, Bhanu Pratap Singh).
In fact, after the Supreme Court hearing on CAA, Bhanu Pratap Singh had arrived in Mustafabad, Delhi to address the people sitting on dharna. This video is from that time. It is clear from this that the old video of Supreme Court lawyer Bhanu Pratap Singh is being shared with the wrong claim.
We further researched more about the ‘owner’ of Himalaya, and found that the chairman of the Himalaya global groups is Meraj Menal, the Global CEO post is held by Shailendra Malhotra and the CFO is Jatin Brahmecha. The man in the viral image and the image of Meraj Menal are compared below and bear no similarity.
A video showing well known lawyer Bhanu Pratap Singh addressing an anti-CAA rally in Delhi in 2020 is going viral, falsely claiming to show the ‘owner’ of the Himalaya group.
Result: False Context/False
YouTube Channel Of Times Express
Official Website Of Himalaya Wellness
(Read our original fact check done in Hindi here.)