Against the backdrop of the ongoing dispute over Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi, a picture of an idol of Nandi, the vehicle of Hindu deity Shiva, is viral on social media. The text accompanying the picture reads, “Nandi always has his face towards the Shiva Lingam, but Nandi of Kashi Vishwanath faces the Gyanvapi Mosque, which was originally Vishwanath Mandir. Nandi gazes at the door, waiting for his master.” This implies that Gyanvapi mosque is actually a Hindu temple.

Facebook pages Hindutva and Namo Dobara, Facebook group We Support Amit Shah, Twitter user The Sanatan Uday and Tulsi Ahuja and several others amplified the claim.

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This is not the first time this image was circulated with such a claim. In fact, it was shared on social media with the same claim in 2019, 2020, and 2021.

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Fact-check

We performed a reverse image search and located the image on stock photo website Shutterstock. It says that the image shows the courtyard of Kashi Vishweshwar temple located in the Wai district of Maharashtra.

Based on this information, we performed some keyword searches on YouTube and found a video of the Kashi Vishweshwar Temple in Maharashtra. In this video, the Nandi idol seen in the viral graphic appears at the 0:52 mark.

Thus, the Nandi idol seen in the viral picture is actually from the courtyard of the Kashi Vishweshwar temple located in Maharashtra’s Wai district. The image was falsely circulated on social media in connection with the Kashi Vishwanath Temple and Gyanvapi Mosque located in Varanasi.

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About the Author

Abhishek is a journalist at Alt News.