A video of a child being brutally thrashed has been shared with the message, “None of your WhatsApp contacts and groups should be left behind. Send this video to everyone and make it viral. This teacher is from RM VM School. Share this video to an extent and the teacher and school both are shut.”

[Viral Hindi text: आप के whatsapp पे जितने भी नंबर एवं ग्रुप हैं एक भी छूटने नही चाहिए, ये वीडियो सबको भेजिए ये वलसाड के RM VM SCHOOL का टीचर है इसको इतना शेयर करो की ये टीचर और स्कूल दोनों बंद हो जाए।]

Alt News has also received requests on its WhatsApp helpline number (+917600011160) to verify the claim.

Tweeted by Jignesh Mevani in 2019

Jignesh Mevani, an independent MLA from Vadgam, Gujarat, had tweeted the same video on May 20, 2019 while tagging PMO.

After a few people claimed that the video is from Egypt, Mevani quote-tweeted his earlier post and asked people to tell him if it’s from Valsad or Egypt.

Video from Syria

Alt News broke the video into multiple frames and reversed-searched the images on the Russian search engine Yandex. We found several foreign websites carrying the video last year. A Middle-Eastern online news portal Al-Masdar News published a report on the incident in February 2018. According to the media platform, ” A group of Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters kidnapped a nine-year-old boy travelling to his school in the eastern countryside of the Dara’a Governorate last month [January 2018]…Since the nine-year-old boy’s kidnapping, the Free Syrian Army fighters have demanded the child’s family pay a ransom of $1 million (USD) in exchange for securing their son’s release.”

Al-Masdar News claimed that the video was sent by FSA rebels to the child’s family.

We also found a tweet by a Syrian journalist Nedal Al-Amari who had shared the video in February 2018 and said that it was sent by the kidnappers to the boy’s family.

The video is, thus, not from India. This was also evident from the language that the child spoke. The same institution, RM VM School, was targeted with a child abuse video in 2018 as well. A video of a man performing ‘exorcism’ on a girl in Chhattisgarh was also shared as a teacher of RM VM School abusing a student.

About the Author

Pooja Chaudhuri is a senior editor at Alt News.