Media misreport: Bhojpuri song ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ played in London during Cricket World Cup

A video of people of different ethnicities dancing to the Bhojpuri track ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ has been reported by several media publications as cricket fans dancing to the song during World Cup in London. Navbharat Times made the claim in a June 13 report titled, “DJ वाले ने बजाया बिहारी गाना, लंदन में सड़क पर ही नाचने लगे अंग्रेज (DJ played Bihari song, the English started dancing on the streets.)”

The Indian Express published a similar report on June 13, titled – “Watch: Bhojpuri song rocks London amidst World Cup fever.”

The media outlet later changed its title to – “Watch: Bhojpuri song allegedly played during World Cup actually from Berlin event”. The URL of the article, however, still reads the old title.

Hindi media outlet Punjab Kesari also linked the video to the 2019 World Cup and carried a report titled, “लंदन की सड़कों पर भोजपुरी गाने पर जमकर नाचे अंग्रेज, वीडियो वायरल (The English dance to Bhojpuri songs on London streets, video viral.)”

Website Scoop Whoop was among the firsts to claim that Londoners danced to ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ but later added a clarification to its report that the video was not shot in London during the Cricket World Cup but in Berlin. However, the video uploaded on its Instagram page, viewed nearly 4 lakh times, still says London.

Furthermore, the song’s vocalist Pawan Singh also shared the video, claiming that a crowd in London danced to his song during India-Australia match. His post came before the above-mentioned media reports.

The video was shared by singer Baba Sehgal as well, using the caption, “The result of the Cricket World Cup in London”. It drew over 1 lakh views.

Video from Carnival of Cultures 2019, Berlin

Alt News found a longer version of the video uploaded on a YouTube channel on June 9. The 1:41-minute video was titled – “Germans Dancing on Indian Songs” and the caption said, “Carnival of Cultures 2019.” The video not only shows people dancing to ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ (in the first few seconds) but other Indian songs like Daler Mehndi’s ‘Tunuk Tunuk Tun’ and Honey Singh’s ‘High Heels’ from the movie ‘Ki & Ka’. We spoke to Aman Seth, the person who runs the said YouTube channel. He informed that the video was shot by him and it also shows his friend Shivam dancing. A few people have commented on the video asking, “Shivam, is that you?”

Carnival of Cultures is an annual festival to celebrate the cultural diversity of different ethnic groups in Berlin. Several other videos from the event held this year show people dancing to many other Indian songs. The van with the Indian flag seen in the viral video is similar to the one that can be spotted in other clips of the carnival. The van says “Berlin” on it.

Erroneous fact-checks

Several media outlets had earlier fact-checked the video. Alt News, however, discovered inaccuracies in two of those reports.

1. OpIndia

OpIndia published two fact-checks – one in English and the other in Hindi. However, both the articles are worded differently, with the Hindi version carrying factual inaccuracies. OpIndia Hindi claimed that the crowd was not dancing to any Bhojpuri track and the video was posted on social media after tampering with the original audio. It claimed that ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ was inserted into the video. However, if one watches the video carefully, people can be seen lip-syncing to the song.

Furthermore, the video shared by OpIndia to back its claim was different from the one that’s viral.

2. News18

In its fact-check, News18 wrote, “The video in question does have Indians and people of other ethnicities dancing to Bollywood song but neither Lollypop Lagelu nor the ICC Cricket World Cup fans in London make an appearance in it.” While the fact-check is accurate on the account that the video was shot in Berlin, the claim that ‘Lollypop Lagelu’ did not “make an appearance in it” is factually incorrect.

Viral on social media

Since the video was uploaded on the internet, it was picked up by social media users and pages which claimed that the event took place in London during the 2019 World Cup. From a page Dhurth Rathi Bhagwadhari, it received over 5 lakh views. 

लो करवा लो वर्ल्ड कप लंदन में

Posted by Dhurth Rathi Bhagwadhari on Wednesday, 12 June 2019

The video is massively viral on Facebook. It is widely circulated on Twitter as well.

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