On November 29, Amar Ujala and Dainik Jagran reported that a 15-year-old girl in Uttar Pradesh’s Baghpat district was allegedly raped by two men. Subsequently, several social media users shared a clipping of Jagran’s report and claimed that the girl was raped by two “jihadis”.

Patanjali’s Rakesh, a verified Twitter user, posted the viral news clipping. His tweet gained over 1,000 retweets. It stated that the incident happened in a Hindu majority village named Ramla, thus implying that the victim was from the Hindu community.

This was earlier posted by a Facebook user. In fact, several Facebook and Twitter users have posted the clipping. Using Crowdtangle, a social media research tool, Alt News noticed that it has been posted across multiple pro-Hindu FB groups such as ‘HINDU COMMUNITY IN USA‘; ‘🚩हिन्दू धर्म रक्षक💪’ [Protector of Hindu religion]; and ‘हिन्दू राष्ट्र 🚩🙏 (ग्रुप में अपने 50 मित्रों को जोड़े🙏)’ [Hindu protector (add 50 friends in the group)] among others.

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Baghpat police debunks false anti-Muslim spin

On December 1, Baghpat police tweeted two images stating that two men were arrested in the case. The first image is a statement that gives details of the arrest. While the other shows the accused.

The accused are Prashant, son of Bharat, and Paramjeet, son of Ravindra.

Both are charged under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 363 (punishment for kidnapping) and 376 (punishment for rape).

On December 3, Baghpat police quote-tweeted @rakesh_bstpyp and @Maitreyeechakr5 stating, “Baghpat police denies misleading information related to the religion of the victim and the accused being circulated on certain social media platforms.”

Alt News spoke with a local journalist who shared a press note by Ramala Thana. He informed that the victim hails from a minority community in Baghpat. Alt News spoke with Baghpat SHO. He said, “The accused and victims are from different communities. The victim, who is a minor, is from a minority community.” According to the official census 2011, Hindus form a majority in the Baghpat district.

The claim that Muslims raped a minor girl in UP’s Baghpat is, therefore, false.

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About the Author

Archit is a senior fact-checking journalist at Alt News. Previously, he has worked as a producer at WION and as a reporter at The Hindu. In addition to work experience in media, he has also worked as a fundraising and communication manager at S3IDF.