“A 9yr old girl was saved 4m rape by alert people. Guy, who was caught with kid, is Sajid. M/s @Uppolice please arrest this guy Sajid & make him spend some time in jail! @myogiadityanath @republic @SureshChavhanke Copy (Video via @SureshPatelJi)” This message is being circulated along with a video in which a girl child is seen crying and a young man is thrashed by passers-by. Those who are sharing it claim that the girl was about to be sexually assaulted by the perpetrator whose name is Sajid, but was rescued in time.
This video has been tweeted by an account named Kunvar Ajaypratap Singh(@sengarajay235) who is followed by PM Modi. It has been retweeted more than 1200 times and ‘liked’ more than 750 times. Singh has credited one Suresh Patel for the video which has been viewed on the latter’s timeline over 77000 times and is among the earliest instances of it being posted on social media. Another Twitter user @goyalsanjeev who is followed by the office of Piyush Goyal also tweeted it. This video has also been tweeted by the account of Swami Nischalanand.
Moreover, the same video was shared on Facebook by a multiple users.
What is the truth?
There is no reference to either the time period or geographical location in the message accompanying the video. However, we were able to spot the license plate of a passing bike in the video.
On the basis of a vehicle number plate seen in the video, with UP-19 being the vehicle registration number of vehicles registered in Shamli district, Alt News contacted the Shamli district police control room. The video was identified to be of an incident that was registered in Jhinjhana police station.
In a conversation with Alt News, MS Gill, police inspector of Jhinjhana station said, “Yes, the video belongs to an incident that was registered in our police station. Gokul Ramdas, the accused, a resident of Tana village, Garhi Pukhta had been arrested.” It may be noted that the name of the accused is Gokul Ramdas and not Sajid.
Moreover, an article published in Eenadu India on June 20, 2018 reported, “Actually, the incident is from the village of Alinagar in Jinjhana, where a woman went to the forest to take grass. Accompanying her was an 8-year-old daughter. According to the information, the mother got busy cutting grass while the child was playing on the nearby road. At the same time, a young man from Tana village of Garhi Pakhta, who was passing through the fields came there inebriated and nabbed the child with a bad intention (translated).”
The Muslim community in India is often portrayed as the morally bankrupt by fake news purveyors on social media. Recently, a claim was circulated widely on social media according to which 95% of perpetrators of rape in 2016 were Muslim. This too was maliciously false. Misinformation of such outrageous nature has now become commonplace as fake news purveyors strive to further the communal divide.
Independent journalism that speaks truth to power and is free of corporate and political control is possible only when people start contributing towards the same. Please consider donating towards this endeavour to fight fake news and misinformation.