Staged video circulating as Pakistani news channel’s reportage after Balakot air strike

A Facebook user, Bhola Nath Varma posted two videos, supposedly of a Pakistani news channel report saying, “देखिये और सोचिज। (Watch and think- translation)”. The message posted along with the video suggests that social media users should see this on-ground news report after the Balakot air strike in Pakistan to comprehend the reality. In the video, some people can be seen carrying the corpses of those who apparently died in the attack. The post, which has now been deleted, had garnered more than 10,000 shares and close to 9 lakh views.

One Megha Osheen also tweeted the video with the claim that Pakistani journalists are giving us the evidence of the air strike. It has racked up close to 1300 retweets so far.

Another Facebook page, 4K Viral Hindustan has also shared the video with the identical text.

In the comments section of Facebook posts and as responses to the Twitter post, several people expressed their doubts regarding the veracity of the video.

Staged video

Alt News found that the video attempts to portray a Pakistani news channel trying to cover-up the deaths due to the IAF air strike. When we looked at the video frame-by-frame, in one particular frame, we found that the text inscribed on the microphone, held by the reporter reads, “लाईट टीवी (Light TV)“. It is highly improbable that a Pakistani news channel’s mic would have a logo written in Hindi. Moreover, the behaviour of the duo shown as reporters in the video is atypical to reporters covering such a serious incident, involving multiple casualties.

Urdu language blunders

Even though the attempt is to portray a Pakistani channel,the language spoken in the video doesn’t even remotely sound like Urdu. For instance, the reporter says, “khuda ki daya se”, whereas a person with a basic fluency in Urdu would prefer to say, “khuda ke karam se”.  Also, the duo in the video use Hindi words like ‘jyada’, and ‘ nivedan’. Had the correspondents been based in Pakistan, their most common choice of words would have been, ‘zyada’, and, ‘guzaarish‘.

In conclusion, an staged news report of the Balakot air strike was believed to be a ground report from the bombed site in Pakistan.

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