Trigger Warning: Molestation

A video is being shared on social media where one can see a few men molesting a woman even as she pleads for them to stop. It is being shared with the claim that the men are from the Muslim community and that there has been no action from the police in this matter.

Twitter Blue user @VirendraDubey_ shared the video on May 30 with a caption in Hindi that said, “This is not Syria! This is not even Pakistan! This is Bihar of India! The appeasement is immense! In Bihar, 4 jihadis molested a Hindu girl. No police case, no action! This is a common thing in Bihar. Every day, many Hindu families are migrating, but Nitish Kumar & Lalu are just concerned about skullcaps and Eid sewai!” The tweet has received over 86,000 views and has been retweeted over 2,000 times. (Archive)

Another Twitter user, @ShaliniKumawat0, also shared the same video the same day with the same caption, using the word ‘Jihadis’ to describe the men in the video, suggesting they were Muslims. The tweet has been retweeted over 500 times. (Archive)

Several other social media users also shared the said video with similar claims on Twitter and Facebook. Some can be found below:

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Fact Check

We came across a tweet from an account named @TrueStoryUP, which describes itself as a ‘registered newspaper and news website’, according to which the incident took place in Gulariya Chak village of Gaya under Magadh Medical College police station area. The victim was sitting and chatting with her boyfriend when four or five men approached them and dragged and molested the girl in front of her boyfriend. One of the boys involved in the deed recorded the video and uploaded it on social media.

When the video went viral on social media, police immediately began proceedings and hunted down the accused seen in the video. The tweet also mentions that the Gaya police arrested two of the five accused. (Archive)

A relevant keyword search led us to other news reports on the incident that confirmed the claims made by @TrueStoryUP.

We also found a press release and a video message by city SP Himanshu shared from the official Twitter handle of Gaya police on May 30 mentioning that as soon as police came to know of the viral video, they took immediate action lodging an FIR on the same day under Sections 294/509/354(B)/341/323/504 of the IPC and Section 67 of IT Act against the five men in the video. Further investigation is on to check if the woman was a minor. If that is the case, then the accused will also be charged under Sections 8 and 12 of the POCSO act. The SP also mentioned the names of two of the five accused. They are Jitendra Kumar and Abhishek Kumar. The other three had also been identified. He added that they were also in touch with the couple who were key witnesses in this case. (Archive)

On May 31, the Gaya Police further released a press notice stating that a third accused had been arrested. He was identified as Nitish Kumar. In the release, they refuted the communal claims made on social media regarding the incident. The press note specifically mentioned the tweet by user Shalini Kumawat (embedded above) and refuted the claims made in it. It further said, “The cyber cell of Gaya Police has contacted Twitter to remove the post by the ID with the name Shalini Kumawat and to get more data about the Twitter account. Once the details are verified, appropriate legal action will be taken.” (Archive)

The SHO of the Magadh Medical College police station told us: “The three arrested so far are all Hindus, so are the victim and her boyfriend. There is no Hindu-Muslim angle in this case.”

Alt News also reached out to city SP Himanshu for more details on the matter. He said, “One more person has been arrested today, a total of three out of the five. We cannot disclose the names of those who haven’t been arrested yet, but there is no communal angle. It is a case of sexual harassment and we will be taking legal actions against all the accused under appropriate sections”.

Therefore, the communal claims made in the social media posts around a video of a woman being molested are false. Three of the five accused have already been arrested and they are all Hindus. The woman and her partner, too, hail from the Hindu community.

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