The Bharat Jodo Yatra led by Congress MP Rahul Gandhi reached Kurukshetra in Haryana on January 8. On the same day, he performed aarti at the Brahma Sarovar in the city. Soon after that, some social media users posted a video of the event claiming that Rahul stopped during the aarti and waited for a cameraperson to take a position.

On January 10, a Twitter user, @BHKSpeaking, shared a 47-second clip of the event on the micro-blogging site with the caption: ‘PAUSE… Let the cameraman come….’ (Archive)

The tweet received over one lakh views. It was retweeted 1,300 times.

The same clip was also tweeted by BJP supporter Anuj Tiwari (@emanujtiwari) with the same caption. (Archive)

Fact Check

Using a keyword search on Twitter, we found a longer version of the clip shared by ANI. In this 3.57-minute video, it can be clearly seen that Rahul Gandhi did pause several times while performing aarti, but so did the priests in front of him, whom he was replicating. For example, at the 0.15-minute mark; again at 0.26. The viral part starts at the 3.16-minute mark in the longer video.

In other words, Rahul Gandhi was following a set of priests while performing the aarti. He paused when they paused. He resumed when they did. The viral video has been clipped from the longer version in a way that it seems the Congress leader is waiting for the camera person to take a position before beginning to perform aarti, which is not the case.

The side-by-side comparison of the viral video and a part of the original clip below proves this conclusively:

The Congress posted a 10-minute video of the event on its official YouTube channel. Here, Rahul can be seen performing aarti. He pauses along with the priests standing in front of him (for example, at the 6.37-minute mark). He then resumes as soon as they do. This continues throughout the time Rahul held the lamp.

Hence, it is clear that Rahul Gandhi did not pause for photographers while performing aarti in Kurukshetra, as claimed in some social media posts.

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About the Author

Indradeep, a journalist with over 10 years' experience in print and digital media, is a Senior Editor at Alt News. Earlier, he has worked with The Times of India and The Wire. Politics and literature are among his areas of interest.