A video of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot exiting a mosque has been shared with the claim that he was offering Friday prayers.
— manoj narula (@NarulaManoj) June 1, 2021
Several users amplified the claim with English captions as well. Many others alluded that the video is recent.
— Mayank Jindal 🇮🇳 (@MJ_007Club) June 1, 2021
Facebook users also promoted the same claim.
The first noticeable aspect of the video is that no one can be spotted wearing either a mask or following social distancing norms. This suggests that the incident is not recent.
A video report by Aaj Tak dated November 23, 2020, stated that the video had earlier been circulating with the claim that Ashok Gehlot was seen offering prayers at a mosque after banning firecrackers in the state. However, the clip is from January 2019 when he paid a visit to the Baba Fakhruddin Dargah in Dungarpur. (The Rajasthan government had imposed a complete ban on the sale of firecrackers last year until December 31, 2020, to safeguard public health amid COVID.)
Alt News located the longer version of the video uploaded on January 29, 2019, on a YouTube channel named ‘Social Fun Tube‘. The viral portion appears after the 1:05 mark.
Rajendra Singh Yadav, Congress MLA from Kotputli, had also shared images of the Rajasthan Chief Minister’s visit to the dargah.
माननीय मुख्यमंत्री श्री अशोक गहलोत जी के साथ डूंगरपुर की गलियाकोट दरगाह में जियारत कर देश व प्रदेश की खुशहाली की कामना की।
Rajasthan news portal First India News Rajasthan’s live report from the same day shows that the CM also stopped at a temple before reaching the dargah.
Therefore, a two-year-old video of Ashok Gehlot is being shared as recent, with claims that he visited a mosque to offer Friday prayers. The truth is that in January 2019, the Chief Minister first stopped at a temple, then proceeded to the dargah in Galiakot. Social media users attempted to spin a Muslim appeasement angle.