With the Karnataka assembly elections days away, a video featuring a man refusing to buy a carry bag after shopping at a supermarket has gone viral on social media. It subsequently shows him carrying all the items in his hands to the spot where his car is parked and ends with a message in Hindi: “Paise bachane hain?”. This is where the audio cuts off and the following set of texts appear — “Modi hatao paise bachao, naukari bachao, beti bachao, democracy bachao, desh bachao”. (Do you want to save money? Remove Modi and save money, job, daughter, democracy, country).
Twitter Blue user Shantanu, who has over 14,000 followers, shared the above video on April 27 with the caption: “One Nation, One Solution. Watch this ‘Modi hatao’ video which is viral in Karnataka.” The video has received over 1,86,000 views and 1,800 retweets. (Archive)
One Nation, One Solution.
Watch this ‘Modi hatao’ video which is viral in Karnataka. pic.twitter.com/9e3XHw5Pnz
— Shantanu (@shaandelhite) April 27, 2023
Another user, Ashish Singh, who has over 10,000 followers on the platform, shared the same video on the same day with the caption, “Modi Hatao Desh Bacho 🔥 Best Ads 💪🔥#KarnatakaElection2023”. The tweet has received over 31,000 views and 200 retweets. (Archive)
Modi Hatao Desh Bacho 🔥 Best Ads 💪🔥#KarnatakaElection2023 pic.twitter.com/ODziMkMy7N
— Ashish Singh (@AshishSinghKiJi) April 27, 2023
Ashish Singh also added a comment under his tweet of the video which said, “Save India From Modi Gov ! Vote For Congress ✋Please Retweet”.
Etemaad Daily News, an Urdu daily from Hyderabad, shared the said video on their YouTube channel which has over 21,000 subscribers, on April 29. They also tweeted the link to the YouTube video on their Twitter handle with over 11,000 followers. (Archive)
Many other social media users have reshared and posted the same video with similar captions across various social media platforms.
On running a reverse image search on some of the key-frames of the given video, we came across a YouTube video from three-year ago titled, “Some interesting funny and creative ads”, which is a compilation of a number of advertisements. The viral video posing as a ‘Modi Hatao’ campaign ad can be found in this compilation of ads between the time frame: 0:35-1:05. At the end of the ad, one can see that originally, it is an advertisement by CEAT Tyres. (Archive)
A keyword search led us to the original video which was shared by CEAT Tyres on their YouTube channel on June 8, 2017. (Archive)
In the below comparison of the text used in the viral video and the video shared by CEAT Tyres, one can spot the difference in the font used for both the videos and that the last word in the displayed line has been spelt differently. Also, the background of the viral video is more blurred than the original one.
Therefore, the viral social media claims of the video being an advertisement targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi are false. The original video has got nothing to do with any political campaign. It has been morphed.
Oishani Bhattacharya is an intern at Alt News.
Independent journalism that speaks truth to power and is free of corporate and political control is possible only when people start contributing towards the same. Please consider donating towards this endeavour to fight fake news and misinformation.