A video of a group of Muslim protestors clashing with the police has been shared with the claim that “Bangladeshi Muslims” in Assam are demanding a separate state.

Several people wrote that Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma took action against “Bangladeshis”.

The captions thank Sarma for the strict measures.

परम आदरणीय असम के मुख्यमंत्री हिंदू हृदय सम्राट हेमंत विश्व शर्मा जी ने बांग्लादेशियों की तबीयत से ठुकाई करवाई। क्यों???🤔

ये जानने के लिए वीडियो देखें🔥🙏🚩👍

#follow me

Posted by Sandeep Mandhotra on Wednesday, 9 June 2021

The video is viral on Twitter and Facebook and Alt News has also received several requests on its WhatsApp helpline number (+91 76000 11160) and mobile application to fact-check the claim.

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It is in fact been circulating since 2017.

 

असम में रिफ्यूजी बांग्लादेशी मुसलमानों ने आजादी की मांग की,
फिर हमारी सेना ने इनका जो स्वागत किया…..😂😂😂
आपका दिल खुश हो जाएगा।……वीडियो खूब शेयर करें!

Posted by Reva D on Sunday, 2 July 2017

2017 video of protest against ‘D voters’ tag imposed on Assam residents

At first glance, the video doesn’t show the police or the protestors wearing masks. Moreover, the fact that it has been circulating on social media since 2017 itself proves the incident is not recent. A keyword search on YouTube took us to a channel that had posted the same video on July 2, 2017. The channel said that people were protesting in Goalpara, Assam against the ‘doubtful citizens and voters’ tag imposed by the government. A youngster died in alleged police firing during the protest. According to Scroll, the video was shot by Assam resident Hussain Ahmed Madani.

Madani had uploaded the video on his Facebook profile on June 30, 2017. He told Scroll that he wasn’t a part of the protest but took the video when he saw the commotion. The video was shot when a group of protestors approached National Highway 37 in Khutamari village of Assam’s Goalpara district.

 

গোৱালপাৰা জিলাৰ খাৰবুজাত উত্তপ্ত পৰিস্থিতি ৷ প্ৰতিবাদ কাৰী আৰু আৰক্ষীৰ মাজত খণ্ডযুদ্ধ, আৰক্ষীৰ গুলীত নিহত এজন আহত এজন।

Posted by Hussain Ahmed Madani on Thursday, 29 June 2017

“The protesters – between 400 and 500, according to police estimates – are holding a banner and a few placards and raising slogans. “We will not tolerate harassment of Indian Muslim citizens – Inquilab Zindabad,” they can be heard saying,” reported Scroll.

Newsclick similarly wrote that the protestors were demonstrating against the alleged harassment of D (doubtful) voters by the Border Police and Foreigners Tribunals. ‘D-voter’ is a category of voters in Assam who have been disenfranchised by the Election Commission upon failing to produce legal documents of citizenship.

Protestors are holding a banner that roughly reads, “People listed in the ‘D voters’ list are genuine and should be removed. 40,000 of these Indians deserve justice and the list should be redone. The disenfranchised population should also be provided with government jobs and security. National Highway 37 should be blocked on June 30, 2017, from 8 am to 12 pm.”

A four-year-old video of a protest in Assam against ‘doubtful citizens and voters’ tag imposed by the government has been falsely shared as ‘Bangladeshi Muslim infiltrators’ demanding for a separate state.

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About the Author

Kalim is a journalist with a keen interest in tech, misinformation, culture, etc