A 2:20-minute video of a caucasian woman singing Sanskrit verses has gone viral with Hindi text, “This is sung on Spain’s radios in the morning. [Translated from स्पेन के रेडियो चैनल में सुबह इसको गया जाता है]”.
Rajya Sabha member Rakesh Sinha tweeted (archive link) on the video on March 24. This was viewed over one lakh times and retweeted over 7,500 times.
स्पेन के रेडियो चैनल में सुबह इसको गया जाता है pic.twitter.com/GKLVOt0a1n
— Prof Rakesh Sinha (@RakeshSinha01) March 24, 2020
Similarly, several other social media users posted the viral video along with the Hindi text on Facebook and Twitter.
Alt News used InVid video verification tool to perform a reverse image search on Google. Using the appropriate keywords during the search, we found a Facebook page called Gaiea Sanskrit. The same username is also available on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music and SoundCloud. We found the viral video after rummaging through several videos on YouTube. It was uploaded on November 9, 2019.
On the ‘about section’ of the Facebook page, website gabriellaburnel.com has been listed. As per domain analysis portal, Domain Big Data, this website is registered to a Gabriella Burnel in Paris, France.
After another keyword search, we found that the official account of the British High Commission in India tweeted a video of Burnel on March 2.
🇬🇧& 🇮🇳share a unique cultural #LivingBridge
Listen to @gabriellaburnel who promotes the ancient Indian language of #Sanskrit in 🇬🇧& earned the nickname ‘the Cultural Ambassador of India in the UK’ – her work shows how much 🇬🇧continues to value Indian culture pic.twitter.com/lUOgmh0x7F
— UK in India🇬🇧🇮🇳 (@UKinIndia) March 2, 2020
Alt News also found Burnel’s profile on Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies. As per this profile, Burnel has been working as a Sanskrit tutor for several years in London. She also writes musical theatre and teaches the Alexander Technique. Her Twitter bio says, “writer of comedy and song/teacher/lover of sanskrit”.
Therefore the claim about the viral video is false. The misinformation was amplified by Rajya Sabha member Rakesh Sinha who has over one million followers on Twitter.
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