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Viral lies: exposed

Misinformation through Whatsapp forwards —videos and photos — spreads like wildfire. Here is our compilation of fake Whatsapp videos that went viral and the reality behind these distorted facts

What was shown: A letter claimed to be written by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is doing the rounds on social media. The letter requests citizens of India to buy only India-made products this Diwali. The letter also has signature of the Prime Minister. But later it was confirmed that this is an old fake letter circulating with the PM’s ‘signature’. PMO further clarified that such documents floating on social media are not authentic and as seen in the image below, the line spacing and the alignment of the text is inconsistent in the document, which is highly unlikely coming from the Prime Minister, also digital signature of PM is easily available on the internet.

What was shown: Multiple videos are viral on social media with the claim that Mumbai is under a high alert and is with a message warning people to avoid crowded areas as the city is under a terrorist attack. It further says that NSG commandos have fully secured metro station at Asalfa, Sakinaka and Jagruti Nagar (Shiv Shena Branch) in Ghatkopar. But later it was found that it was a mock drill which was conducted as a routine exercise outside multiple metro stations before Independence Day. The videos are of the same. They were made viral with a misleading narrative.

What was shown: A video where a man is mixing dirty water in a white coloured liquid is floating on social media with the claim that adulterated milk is being supplied to people in flood-affected areas of India. But later it was found that the man in the video has worn a cap which says – “Duque Presidente”, which is Spanish for “Duque President”, and Iván Duque Márquez is the current President of Colombia. It is clear that the incident did not take place in India as there is presence of a Tronador D container in the video and the pesticide is not available for sale in India.

What was shown: A video claiming that the Indian Independence Day was marked at London’s Trafalgar Square with fighter jets making a tricolour in the sky, is viral on social media. The video shows jets emerging behind a large building and leave a dazzling display of orange, green and white colours in the sky. But later it was found that it was neither Indian Independence day nor Trafalgar Square and the video is of Italy’s republic day which is celebrated every year at Piazza Venezia in Rome. The same video was viral on social media as Indian Independence Day at Trafalgar Square, London in 2018 as well and it is not clear who started this false claim.