A video of two visibly distraught women, one of whom is seen wearing a burqa, being remonstrated by a group of men is viral on social media with users claiming that the burqa-clad woman was attempting to commit ‘Love Jihad’ by asking the other woman, who is a Hindu, to wear a burqa and get involved with a Muslim man. The video was shared with the same claim by the verified Right Wing account @ajaychauhan41. “…This is Love Jihad”, the user wrote. (Archive)

The readers should note that @ajaychauhan41 shares communal misinformation on X regularly. Alt News has debunked falsehoods amplified by this user several times.

User @ImSudhakarRao tweeted the same video with the same claim in Kannada. (Archive)

Several other users including @sanatan_kannada and @FollowAkshay1 amplified the viral video. (Archives- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

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Fact Check

We noticed that users had pointed out that the viral video was from 2021. The incident took place in the Kodagu district in Karnataka. Taking a cue from this, we performed a keyword search and found a The News Minute article titled, “Karnataka’s Kodagu saw five hate crimes in just two weeks”, dated November 23, 2021, which contains a frame from the viral video.

According to the report, two Muslim girls were harassed by a group of men from Hindutva groups at a bus stop in Shanivarasanthe on November 18, 2021. The mob reportedly accused the girls of handing over a burqa to a classmate who was Christian. Shanivarsanthe police inspector Parashiva Murthy stated that nothing untoward was happening and that the Christian girl had kept the burqa with her since there was no space in their bags. He added that she was coming to the bus stop to return it to the Muslim girls. Despite this, the Muslim girls were threatened, slapped and beaten by the mob in public.

The mob of over 30 people, with cameras rolling, swooped down on the girls, hounding them with questions about where they were from and why they had given the burqa to someone else. Police had arrested two persons – Prajwal and Kaushik – in the incident. “You wear the burqa, you should go to school and go back home. The burqa is not to be given to others and to spoil girls from other homes,” one of the men was reportedly heard shouting in the video even as the girls pleaded with the men to leave them alone.

Another report by The New Indian Express on the same incident dated November 2021 further clarifies the situation. In a statement made by one of the victims’ fathers, on the day of the incident, his daughter attended classes in her college in the morning. They had to remove the burqa before entering the classes and so his daughter’s friend had kept it with a Christian girl from the same college in the morning. The Christian girl did not attend the college on Thursday. The two girls were waiting for this Christian girl to return the burqa in the evening. While the burqa was being returned, the victims were attacked and physically assaulted by boys from the Sangh Pariwar, the report says quoting the father.

The victim’s father further stated that the girls were locked up, beaten, abused and assaulted. The girls suffered injuries on their back including scratch marks. They were later admitted to Kodalipet Hospital.

Hence, a 2021 video of two Muslim women being harassed by Hindutva activists is viral on social media with the misleading claim that one of the women, seen in burqa, was trying to brainwash the other woman by making her wear a burqa and get involved with a Muslim man. In reality, both women shown in the video are Muslims. They were waiting for their Christian friend to return a burqa given to her by one of the girls who had to take it off before entering her class.

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About the Author

Student of Economics at Presidency University. Interested in misinformation.