A video of a crowd vandalising vehicles parked on the street is being circulated widely. Chants of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ can be heard in the clip. It has been claimed that Muslims in the Lalganj town of Pratapgarh vandalised Durga Puja pandals and also disrupted the prayers. In response, Hindus purportedly beat Muslims and removed Islamic flags from mosques.

Facebook user Pankaj Singh Rajput shared the footage and accompanying claim. (Archive link)


प्रतापगढ़ जिले के लालगंज कस्बे में दुर्गा पूजा के पंडाल में घुस कर मुस्लिम समुदाय के लोगो ने पूजा बंद करवा दी और मां दुर्गा का पताका निकाल कर फेंक दिया, उसके बाद श्री बजरंग सेना के कुछ सदस्य ओर हिंदू संगठन के लोग सक्रिय हो गए, एक एक मुस्लिम को उनके घरों से निकाल कर बुरी तरह पीटा, मस्जितों के झंडे उखाड़ कर फेंक दिए गए कारों व मोटर साइकिलों को तोड़ फोड़ दिया गया, समस्त मुस्लिम समुदाय थाने में शरण लिए हुए है, उक्त घटना पर मुख्य मंत्री योगी आदित्यनाथ ने हर्ष व्यक्त करते हुए युवा हिंदुओ को बधाई दी,
जय श्री राम 🚩🙏💪

Posted by Pankaj Singh Rajput on Monday, October 11, 2021

It is widespread on Facebook and Twitter.

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Alt News noticed the license plate of the white van being overturned by the mob. It reads ‘CG’, indicating that the vehicle is from Chhattisgarh. Apart from this, ‘Mohoba Bazar‘ is written on the back of the car, which is located in Chhattisgarh’s Raipur.

We found a tweet by UP police’s fact-checking arm debunking the viral claim. The police said that the incident occurred on October 5, 2021, in Kawardha, Chhattisgarh, and has nothing to do with Pratapgarh. The tweet also contains a link to an article by the news portal Naya Bharat. The report states that a row broke out between two groups over the installation of a flag in Kawardha, Chhattisgarh. Locals took to the streets armed with sticks and batons. The police imposed Section 144 in the area to disperse them and control the situation.

On October 7, a Facebook user had shared the viral video along with a few other clips. In the first, the police are seen chasing the crowd. The second features damaged vehicles, while in the third video, a group of people is seen ransacking vehicles with sticks.

छत्तीसगढ़ के कवर्धा जिले में भाजपा के बेरोजगार आतंकवादियों ने आज मुसलमानो के घरों में घुसकर तोड़फोड़ वा मारपीट की।

यहां कांग्रेस की सरकार है।

Posted by Ashraf Raza on Wednesday, October 6, 2021

We performed a keyword search using clues from the video and found a video report by Hindustan dated October 6. The video shows a man removing the saffron flag mounted on a thoroughfare and throwing it on the ground. According to the report, right-wing organisations held a rally in Chhattisgarh over the controversy that erupted due to the removal of the flag. The rally took a violent turn. The police imposed Section 144 in the area and suspended internet services. According to a report by ABP News, the flag was removed on October 3. Two days later, a group of people attacked the person who’d thrown the flag on the ground. Right-wing organisations then took out a rally in response to the incident.

According to Amar Ujala, police had identified 70 people involved in the violence and arrested 59. Police personnel also lathi-charged those who ransacked shops and damaged vehicles. Some policemen also sustained minor injuries. Free Press Journal also released a video report on the clashes.

Alt News contacted Pratapgarh police who confirmed that the video is from Chhattisgarh and the incident was unrelated to Durga Puja celebrations.

A video of a dispute between two groups in Chhattisgarh was falsely shared as Pratapgarh, Uttar Pradesh. A false claim was added that Muslims disrupted Durga Puja celebrations. While the incident was communal, it was over the removal of a saffron flag.

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