A video is being widely circulated with the claim that Rohingya settlements established in Jammu and Kashmir under the Roshni Act are being bulldozed by the administration.

The video below amassed over 9,000 views. The user wrote that Rohingya and Bangladeshi encampments are being demolished.

Alt News received numerous requests on its WhatsApp helpline number (+91 76000 11160) and mobile application to investigate the video. Furthermore, users like @jagat_darak, @doctorrichabjp, @Shrish_1987, @akshayspeaks2 also promoted the message and accompanying video.

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Fact-check

The clip features the ‘Jammu Links News’ logo which we took as a clue and performed a keyword search on YouTube. Alt News found that there is no Rohingya angle to the story. The visuals were uploaded to the Jammu Links News Youtube channel on June 5, 2021. The video description states, “In its effort to continuous demolition drives by Lakes and Waterways Development Authority through its Enforcement Wing, several illegal constructions/encroachments were demolished from the last one week under the supervision of Enforcement Officer, in the area of, Lashkari Mohalla, Doji Mohalla, Burzhama, Wangut Teilbal & Nishat, in which one single story with tin walling, one ground floor, two plinth blocks & two shops raised illegally were demolished on spot.”

Regional news channel ‘JK Update’ also posted this video with the same claim.

Punjab Kesari and ETV Bharat carried similar reports.

On May 28, India Today reported that in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, there were instances of people raising illegal constructions while taking advantage of the lockdown. There was a proliferation of illegal construction around Dal Lake, which was now being demolished. 170 illegal structures were demolished in this area and CCTV cameras were also installed. This work was carried out by the Lake and Waterways Development Authority (LAWDA).

We reached out to Bashir Ahmed Bhatt, Vice Chairman of LAWDA. He informed Alt News that they have been tearing down new illegal constructions every day under court orders. The demolished properties include homes and shops that belonged to locals. He has not received any word of Rohingya or Bangladeshi colonies being torn down.

We also spoke to a local journalist from Srinagar. He reiterated that the illegal constructions belonged to locals, and were demolished by LAWDA.

A video of illegal constructions being torn down in Jammu and Kashmir was falsely stared as Rohingya and Bangladesh refugee colonies bulldozed.

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About the Author

Priyanka Jha specialises in monitoring and researching mis/disinformation at Alt News. She also manages the Alt News Hindi portal.