No, the elderly man pelting stone in Kanpur is not Muslim cleric from Muzaffarnagar

Author Bhaavna Arora tweeted two images – a screenshot of an injured elderly man and a photo of an old man who can be seen pelting a stone – along with the message, “Chacha patharbaaji karega to kya khane ko milega? Biryani? (Uncle, if you pelt stones, what will you eat? Biryani?)”. Her tweet has garnered over 1,000 retweets.

Another Twitter user Vivek posted the images and quipped, “Newton’s third law: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

One more tweet, comparing the same two images, has garnered more than 1,000 retweets so far.

Fact-check

Alt News found that the two men are not the same person as suggested on social media.

Image 1: Kanpur

With a keyword search on Google, Alt News found a PDF version of Hindustan Times’s Lucknow edition which was published on December 22, 2019. However, according to the caption of the image, it was shot on December 21 (Saturday).  “An elderly man throws a stone during the protest in Kanpur on Saturday,” reads the caption. The man is unidentified in the photo.

Image 2: Muzaffarnagar

The other image is of Maulana Asad Raza Hussaini, 65, who along with students staying in the Saadat hostel, Muzaffarnagar, was beaten up and taken into custody by the police. Hussaini was bedridden with multiple injuries, according to a December 24 report by Firstpost. Journalist Narendra tweeted Hussaini’s image on December 29, 2019.

According to a hostel staffer quoted in a December 31 report in The Times of IndiaHussaini was dragged out of the madrassa-cum-orphanage and taken to a discreet location. He was allegedly assaulted for hours before he was let off in the wee hours of December 21 following intervention by influential people from the region. The Times of India quotes his age as 72.

Another report by Bharat Samachar reports similar details. It says that Maulana Asad Raza Hussaini, a renowned Muslim cleric, was dragged out of the hostel and beaten up by Muzaffarnagar police during a search operation to comb out rioters.

In conclusion, a photograph of an injured Muslim cleric who was brutally thrashed by the police in Muzaffarnagar was falsely shared along with an image of an unidentified stone pelter to suggest that the police excess was in retaliation to stone-pelting.

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