In the early hours of Saturday, November 4, at least nine armed terrorists including suspected suicide bombers stormed an air force base at Mianwali in Pakistan’s Punjab province. According to the latest reports, three aircraft parked at the base were damaged in the attack even as security personnel killed all nine militants.

Against the backdrop of this, a video of a Pakistani aircraft in flames has gone viral on social media, with users claiming that the visuals are from the Mianwali base attack.

A verified page on X, Megh Updates (@MeghUpdates), shared the video, stating, “Update Pak #Mianwali attack: As per local claims 5 aircrafts including 3 PAF jests and 1 trainer aircraft have been destroyed. 3 attackers killed. ops still ongoing…. Mianwali PAF base also has sizeable presence of chinese assets.” (sic)

The tweet had received over 1,71,900 views, 2,600 likes and 669 retweets before it was taken down. (Archive).

Readers should note that X user @MeghUpdates shares misinformation regularly on the platform.

Another verified page on X (formerly Twitter), @FrontalForce, shared the clip with the caption, “Pak Airforce fighter jets up in flames. Meanwhile, Mianwali airbase attack still ongoing.” The video has received over 1,11,200 views, 1,700 likes and 521 retweets. (Archive)

Verified profiles on X including, Raja Kabeer (@kabeerraja786), Amber Tweets (@amber_rj), Dr. Richa Rajpoot (@doctorrichabjp), AstroCounselKK (@AstroCounselKK), Neela Pakshi (@Neela_Pakshi) and Dr. Shivam Dubey (@ShivamdubeYspn) also amplified the claim. Right Wing influencer Rishi Bagree (@rishibagree) also shared the same video with the same claim, but he later deleted his tweet.

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Fact Check

We broke down the video using Invid software and reverse-searched one of the visuals on Google. This led us to a YouTube video by Hindustan Times from May 10, 2023, titled, “Pak embarrassed as Imran supporters burn Chinese Shenyang F-6 dummy aircraft in Mianwali | Watch” The video description states that, “In a major embarrassment for Pakistan, supporters of former PM Imran Khan stormed outside an army base in Mianwali city of Punjab and set on fire a Chinese Shenyang F-6 dummy aircraft.”

We noticed that from 1:25 mark to the 1:30 mark of the Hindustan Times video, the footage matches the viral video closely. Here is a comparison of the visuals.

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Business Today had also published a report on May 9, 2023, titled, “Imran Khan arrest: Massive protests erupt in Pakistan; Air force dummy aircraft set on fire” which stated that massive protests broke out after the arrest of Pakistan’s former Prime Minister, Imran Khan, and some of his supporters allegedly set fire to an air-force dummy aircraft outside Mianwali air base in Pakistan.

EurAsian Times also tweeted the video on May 10, 2023 confirming that a PAF Shenyang F-6 (Chinese) dummy aircraft was set ablaze by the public outside a Pakistan Air Force base in Mianwali.

To sum up, an old video from May, 2023 of a dummy aircraft set on fire in Pakistan’s Mianwali is circulating on social media with users falsely claiming that the visuals are from the November 4 terror attack at a Pakistani airbase.

Abira Das is an intern at Alt News.

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