Days after the scuffle between supporters of the radical Sikh outfit Waris Punjab De and Punjab police in Amritsar’s Ajnala over the arrest of one of their members, the social media spotlight is now on Amritpal Singh Sandhu, the 29-year-old Sikh preacher who took over the reigns of the organization after the demise of Deep Sidhu.
In this backdrop, several social media users are sharing an image showing Amritpal Singh standing in front of what appears to be a mosque, citing it as proof to claim that Singh is “neither a Sikh nor an Indian”.
A Twitter user and famous TV panellist @Dr_RizwanAhmed was among those who shared the image on Twitter, with the caption “Fraud Punjab De!’ Neither a Sikh nor an Indian!”
Another Twitter user @saffronsoul while commenting on a post by handle @JaipurDialogue shared the same picture of Amritpal in front of a Mosque with the same claim.
Another such post by @RealBababanaras, with the caption “He is not a Sikh but just Pakistan’s ISI funded terrorist” has received nearly 2,500 retweets at the time of writing this article.
The archive of the viral post can be seen here and here
Who is Amritpal Singh Sandhu?
Amritpal Singh Sandhu is a 29-year-old Dubai-returned radical Sikh preacher.
Singh, who ran a family-owned transport business for years in Dubai made headlines when he was appointed the head of ‘Waris Punjab De’, an organisation founded by actor turned activist Deep Sidhu, who died in a car accident.
Amritpal Singh Sandhu claims to be a follower of the former Khalistan separatist Jairnail Singh Bhindrawala who was killed in Operation Bluestar in June 1984.
Following the Anjala police station incident, Amritpal Singh has emerged as the new face of the fundamentalist fringe in Punjab.
A Simple reverse image search of the viral photo led us to the LinkedIn profile of Amritpal Singh Sandhu. The display picture used in the profile is identical to the viral image.
On close analysis of the image and comparing it with the viral image, one observes what appears to be glass windowpanes behind Singh, as opposed to the mosque seen in the viral image. Singh’s hair has also been edited and shortened in the viral image.
After Checking the image of Amritpal Singh, we checked the background picture of the mosque going viral. After tracing the viral picture with the help of a Google reverse image search, we found this picture uploaded on a travel website.
Along with this, we have found a similar image to the viral picture on another website called the wonderingQuinn. According to the website, The Mosque shown in the image is the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque of Dubai.
We thus conclude that the viral image of Khalistan sympathizer Amritpal Singh with the mosque behind him is edited and altered.
Result: Altered Image
Amritpal Singh’s LinkedIn profile
Image uploaded on The Fardan Group travel website
Image uploaded on the wondering website
Times of India News report, Published on 10 Oct 2021
Times of India News report, Published on 26 Feb 2023
Deccan Herald News report, Published on 25 Feb 2023
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