On September 4, against the backdrop of Pakistan’s win against India in the Super 4 game of the Asia Cup, a 49-second long video clip of fireworks was shared on social media claiming that fireworks were set off in Srinagar in celebration of India’s defeat.
Sudarshan News tweeted the clip with a caption in Hindi that read, “Celebrations in Srinagar after India’s defeat in front of Pakistan.” The caption of the tweet also says that the destruction of these “offspring of snakes” is a must. They later deleted the tweet but an archive of it is available in public domain.
Similarly, Sagar Kumar, a journalist affiliated with Sudarshan News, tweeted the clip with the same claim and later deleted the tweet. (Archive link.)
We watched the viral video carefully and noticed a mosque-like structure is visible in the video at the 0:05-second mark. Moreover, at the 0:43-second mark when the fireworks go silent for a few seconds the crowd chants “Naara-e-taqbir, Allahu Akbar”.
Taking note of these clues, we performed a keyword search in Urdu on Facebook and came across multiple videos of fireworks that are claimed to be from Srinagar. Among these, we found a video shared by two different users (user 1 and user 2) in August 2020. In this video, we can again hear people chanting “Nara-e-taqbir”.
The video had a caption in Urdu which, when translated, reads, “Fireworks display on Pakistan’s Independence Day in Nawakdal area of Srinagar…” Based on this, we performed a subsequent search on Facebook using relevant keywords, and came across the viral video. It was shared on Facebook on August 14, 2020, i.e., on the Independence Day of Pakistan.
The caption on the video claimed the location to be Nawakadal, Srinagar. Using Google Earth Pro, we geolocated the video at Nawakadal Chowk, near Masjid Abu Bakr, Srinagar.
We also found tweets by Srinagar Police that claimed the video to be half-a-decade old and that it was was shot at Nawakadal chowk.
While it is difficult to determine exactly when the viral clip was shot, based on all the pieces of evidence it is safe to conclude that the clip is indeed from Srinagar but it was shot way before the September 4 Asia Cup match between India and Pakistan.
To sum it up, Sudarshan News and journalists affiliated with the channel shared old clips from Srinagar as visuals after the India v/s Pakistan match in the 2022 Asia Cup. Sudharshan News and its employees have a history of spreading misinformation that has been documented by Alt News. The readers can find the related reports here.
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