Massive protests have been registered across the country against the Citizenship Amendment Act. In the wake of the agitation, images of vandalism are circulating on social media.

Image 1

An image of a mob vandalising a Buddha statue is being circulated with the claim that a group of Muslim protesters desecrated the idol. “जो दलित “भीम-मीम भाई-भाई” का नारा देते हैं वो ये तस्वीर देख ले लखनऊ की है!! मुसलमानों ने दलितों हिन्दुओ की औकात बताई लानत है दलित हिन्दुओ जय मीम का नारा देते हो कल यही मुसलमान तुम्हारे घर तोड़कर तुम्हे तुम्हारे घर से भगा देंगे और तुम्हारे परिवार के साथ क्या करेंगे सोचो। रोहिंग्या के समर्थन में मुल्लों ने बुद्ध को तोड़ा था जिसे अम्बेडकर भी मानते है और ये कथित दलित चिंतक मुल्लों के लिए बौद्धों और दलित शर्णार्थियों का विरोध कर रहे जो बहुत ही चिंताजनक है !!” – reads the message shared with the below photograph.

The message is also circulating on WhatsApp.

2012 image from Lucknow

With a reverse image search on Yandex, we found the image posted in a 2012 blog. According to the blog, the image is from Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh.

“A mob damaged a statue of Buddha at Buddha Park in old Lucknow in protest against violence in Myanmar and Assam. The mob turned violent after the Alvida Namaz on the last Friday of Ramzan on August 17, 2012, in Lucknow, India”, reads the caption of a Getty Images photo of the same incident. It was clicked on August 17, 2012, while the aforementioned blog was published on August 18, 2012.

Source: Getty Images

“Violence erupted after Alvida namaz (on the last Friday of Ramzan) in Lucknow as a mob, numbering about 500, went berserk and indulged in large-scale violence, targeting mediapersons in particular and even beating up several bystanders who were caught unawares,” reported The Hindu on August 18, 2012.

Image 2

One more image of a man wearing a skull cap kicking an Amar Jawan monument is being shared with a similar narrative. The message says that such a person from any community – Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Jain, Christian, Buddhist – can never be a citizen of this country. “হিন্দু-মুসলিম-খ্রিস্টান-শিখ-বৌদ্ধ-জৈন অনেক পরে,যে শহীদ জওয়ানদের স্মৃতি স্তম্ভে লাথি মারে সে কখনও ভারতবর্ষের নাগরিক হতে পারে না ।।”, reads the Bengali text posted with the image.

The same image has been shared by multiple users on Facebook and Twitter. Alt News has received multiple requests on its official App and WhatsApp number.

2012 image from Mumbai

The below image was clicked by local newspaper Mid-Day’s photographer Atul Kamble on August 11. It depicts a man named Shahbaz Abdul Qadir Shaikh who was arrested by the police for desecrating the Amar Jawan memorial. On August 31, 2012, the outlet reported, “According to cops investigating the matter, Shahbaz felt remorseful about his actions.

In conclusion, two old and unrelated photographs of mob vandalism are circulating on social media to discredit the protest against the Citizenship Amendment Bill.

About the Author

Jignesh is a writer and researcher at Alt News. He has a knack for visual investigation with a major interest in fact-checking videos and images. He has completed his Masters in Journalism from Gujarat University.