A12 year old Chinese film clip resurfaces, prominent Indian News houses report controversy as recent.

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Following the recent tragic events in France which have sparked worldwide debate over the spread of radical Islam vs Islamophobia, Journalist Deepak Chaurasia and a few prominent Indian News channels and News websites have reported that China’s state-run channel China Central Television (CCTV) broadcasted a portrait/painting of Prophet Muhammed in a TV series and a short clip of that controversial scene has gone viral on the Internet.

News Houses

India TV‘s website published an article which said

“चीन ने सरकारी टेलिविजन पर पैगंबर हजरत मोहम्मद की तस्वीर दिखाए जाने के बाद पाकिस्तान ने खामोशी अख्तियार कर ली है जबकि फ्रांस में जब पैगंबर मोहम्मद के कार्टून को दिखाया गया था तो पाकिस्तान ने कड़ा विरोध दर्ज कराया था।”

Translation: Pakistan has maintained silence after China’s State run channel CCTV broadcasted the portrait of Prophet Mohammed on Telivision while it had strongly opposed France on display of caricature/cartoon of Prophet Mohammed.

The Economic Times report said “The Chinese state-run TV channel China Central Television (CCTV) has recently broadcasted a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad. Arslan Hidayat, an Uyghur Activist, tweeted a video of a Chinese TV series depicting a scene of an Arab ambassador visiting China during the rule of Tang dynasty. The Arab ambassador can be seen in that video presenting a painting of the Prophet Muhammad to the Chinese emperor. The fact that the portrait of the Prophet was shown openly in a TV show has taken netizens by surprise in China, ET has gathered. Netizens have been asking whether it is blasphemous to show Prophet Muhammad’s paintings so brazenly in a TV show.”

 

Wion News network published an article reported the event with a similar angle and further added “Some Netizens have been wondering whether the Muslim world will now boycott Chinese goods after Prophet Muhamed was displayed in the TV series amid large scale reports of Chinese repression of Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang.” They also posted a video on Youtube about the same.

OpIndia published an article that said “Amidst the widespread controversy that has erupted over the depiction of caricatures of Prophet Muhammad in France, a video of a TV series telecast on a Chinese state-run TV channel China Central Television (CCTV) has gone viral on the internet.”

Twitter

Renowned Journalist Deepak Chaurasia tweeted –“चीन के सरकारी चैनल ने हाल ही में पैगंबर मोहम्मद का कैरिकेचर प्रसारित किया है। क्या मुस्लिम दुनिया अब पैगंबर मोहम्मद के कैरिकेचर दिखाए जाने पर चीनी वस्तुओं के बहिष्कार की अपील नहीं करेगी.”

Transaltion: China’s state-run channel has recently broadcasted a caricature of Prophet Mohammed. Would the Muslim world now boycott Chinese goods?

Archive

The video clip of the alleged Chinese TV series went viral amongst Twitteraties. Twitter users shared the clip claiming it to be a recent Television broadcast in China which shocked many netizens. The clip is claimed to be showing an a scene of an Arab ambassador visiting China during the rule of Tang dynasty. The Arab ambassador can be seen in that video presenting a painting of the Prophet Muhammad to the Chinese emperor.

OPIndia’s official handle tweeted “Chinese state-run channel shows the portrait of Prophet Muhammad, netizens ask if Muslims will boycott China.”

Twitter handle @SengeHSering which has 13k followers shared the controversial clip with the caption “China makes a movie, and shows Prophet Mohammad in it. Where is the outrage? Iran? Saudi Arabia? Pakistan? Malaysia? Turkey? Muslims are not slaves of Allah. Communist Chinese leader is what they really worship.”

Twitter user @SalihHudayar who claims to be an Uyghur muslim shared the clip with the caption :

#China calls #Islam an “ideological virus,” engages in genocide against #Muslims in #EastTurkistan, depicts Prophet #Muhammad in film broadcasted by Chinese state media and is met with complete silence from Muslim leaders like @RTErdogan @ImranKhanPTI & others. #HypocrisyAlert.

 

 

Analysis

The film in question was shown on Chinese channel 12 years ago.

All the news reports and viral controversial clip on twitter actually could be traced back to a single tweet by Uyghur Rights activist Arslan Hidayat. The clip is actually from a Chinese movie named “The Glorious Times of the Tang Dynasty” that was released in 2008. Hence, it is not a recent depiction or portrait of Prophet Mohammed.

The Economic Times have deleted their article already. But you can see the archived version here

The original tweet by Arslan Hidayat included the now viral clip and caption which said “Image of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) on a TV series on a #Chinese state-run TV channel #CCTV. Context: an ambassador from an Arab nation gifts a portrait of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to the emperor during the Tang Dynasty. Can we now boycott #Chinese goods?” 

archive

In the same twitter thread he translated the dialogues controversial scene which unravels the potrait of Prophet Mohammed. It read : The ambassador says “这是我国真主穆罕默德的肖像。” The translation is: “This is the portrait of the God of our country, Muhammad.” Speechless!

Context

The viral video which is a clip from the Chinese movie mentioned above shows an Arab merchant unraveling and presenting a portrait of Prophet Mohammed to the King of Tang Dynasty declaring that Prophet Mohammed is the God of Muslims. This statement is very controversial and hurtful to the religious sentiments of Muslims as they believe in Allah who is omnipresent, shapeless and formless. Idol worship or portrayal of Prophet Mohammed and Allah are prohibited in Islam which makes the clip and statements more hurtful and insensitive.

Read more on CNN

 

The SMHoaxSlayer team on further investigation found that although the viral clip had the watermark of CCTV the Chinese state run channel Arslan Hidayat never mentioned the date or time of the television broadcast. The news channels, websites and twitter users didn’t notice this minute but crucial detail. SMHoaxSlayer team after using reverse image search and other fact-checking tools found three different blogs about the controversial movie which mentioned it repelled and caused furore at that time too.

French blog containing the screenshots of the video in question was posted on 26th Dec 2008

 

 

Also last year

Links to news websites which published the story with similar angle.

Newstracklive

चीन ने दिखाया पैगंबर मोहम्मद का कैरिकेचर, पाकिस्तान-तुर्की ने साधी चुप्पी

https://janamtv.com/80307339/

चीन ने दिखाया पैगंबर मोहम्मद का कैरिकेचर, पाकिस्तान-तुर्की की नहीं खुल रही जुबान

https://newstapglobal.blogspot.com/2020/10/chinese-state-run-channel-shows.html

Chinese state-run channel shows the portrait of Prophet Muhammad, netizens ask if Muslims will boycott China


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Harsh Kashiv

Journalism student and truth seeker.