Recently, a clipped video of former Maharashtra chief minister Udhhav Thackeray speaking at a public event went viral. Social media users have claimed that Thackeray called Mughal emperor Aurangzeb his brother.

Maharashtra MLA and BJP leader Nitesh Rane shared this video with a caption in Marathi that can be translated to ‘Biggest Traitor’. The tweet has over 450,000 views and supporters of the BJP have shared the video widely on Twitter.

Another Twitter user named Manav_hindu shared this video with a caption in Hindi that translates to ‘Aurangzeb gave his life for Mother India. Everyone who comes in contact with Congress is Pappu.’ This Tweet has over 30,000 views at the moment.

Other Right Wing handles that shared the video with a similar claim include @PunekarSays, @kalnemibasu, @VedicAshutosh, @BharatBhavsar11, @rasthrawadi_aks, @BholeVithhal, @Munna_YadavUP. The screenshots of these Tweets can be seen in the slideshow below.

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Fact Check

By going through the official social media handles of Udhhav Thackeray, Alt News came across a Facebook Live from February 19, 2023. According to the banner seen in the video, this was an interactive conference with the North Indian community living in Maharashtra. Thackeray was invited to speak at this event as a chief guest.

शिवसेना – उद्धव बाळासाहेब ठाकरे पक्षाचे पक्षप्रमुख मा.श्री. उद्धवजी ठाकरे साहेब – LIVE

शिवसेना – उद्धव बाळासाहेब ठाकरे पक्षाचे पक्षप्रमुख मा.श्री. उद्धवजी ठाकरे साहेब यांचा उत्तर भारतीय लोकांशी चर्चा सत्र । अंधेरी – LIVE

Posted by Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday, 19 February 2023

He talked about the rise of Hindutva and described an experience of meeting migrants from Uttar Pradesh who had come to Mumbai for work. He said, “We do not hold any grudges about North Indians or Muslims”. He added, “Everyone who respects this land as their motherland, is our brother”.

At the 32:11-minute mark in the video, he starts talking about Aurangzeb. He says, “Around 3 to 4 years ago, you might or might not have read or heard about this: We had a soldier serving in Kashmir. He took leave from duty to go back to his family. When the terrorists got to know that he was leaving for home alone and unarmed, they abducted him en route, tortured him by cutting up different parts of his. His dead body was found somewhere days after. Was he ours or not? He sacrificed his life for the nation. Now if I say that he was my brother, then you might ask me about his name. His name was Aurangzeb and he was a Muslim by faith, but he gave his life for this land of Mother India. Was he, then not our brother? He indeed was”.

Here, Udhhav Thackeray was mentioning the gruesome murder of rifleman Aurangzeb, who was kidnapped and shot dead in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama on June 14, 2018. And not about the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.

Hence, the video that has gone viral on social media is a clipped video and Thackeray’s speech is taken out of context as he mentions Aurangzeb, the martyred Indian soldier and not the Mughal emperor.

Vansh Shah is an intern with Alt News.

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