In a September 6 broadcast, Times Now aired a piece of ‘breaking news’ where a video of a fighter jet was broadcast as the “first visuals of a fighter jet, allegedly belonging to Pakistan, hovering over Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan”. The anchor says, “These are the fighter jets that you can see on your screen facilitated by Pakistan to aid the Taliban forces as they try to crush the resistance that is being offered by the forces in the Valley.”
Times Now reporter Pradeep Dutta carried forward the discussion stating that the visuals clearly showcase that it isn’t the Taliban fighting but the Pakistani army fighting on the outfit’s behalf. The rest of the broadcast, claiming “Pakistani invasion in Panjshir Valley” and “warfare to crush resistance in Panjshir Valley”, is also based on the video.
The channel had also tweeted the video but it was later taken down. An archived link can be accessed here.
The same video was shared on social media, including by journalist Parvez Chaudhary.
— Chaudhary Parvez (@ChaudharyParvez) September 6, 2021
Video from UK
Taliban and opposition forces were battling to control Panjshir Valley, the last Afghan province resisting the Taliban’s control. The province reportedly fell to the Taliban on September 6. There have been claims that Pakistan’s support led to the Taliban seizing Panjshir. The country has denied supporting the Taliban.
But the video aired by Times Now does not depict the recent conflict.
Several Twitter users pointed out that the video shows a United States Air Force (USAF) F-15 jet at Mach Loop in Wales. Alt News found a video that closely resembles the location in the video used by Times Now.
The comparison below shows that the location is the same – Mach Loop, Wales.
The exact location on Google Earth can be accessed here.
UK Defence Journal, an independent website publishing British and international defence news and analysis, also called out Times Now’s misreport.
— UK Defence Journal (@UKDefJournal) September 6, 2021
Times Now, therefore, aired a video of an F-15 flying over Mach Loop in Wales, UK, as a Pakistani fighter jet in Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan.
[Update: Times Now took down its broadcast from YouTube after this fact-check report was published. A downloaded copy has been added to this report.]