Claim: A video of a pride of lions with their cubs walking on streets has been going viral with claims of being shot in Dhaula Kuan near Delhi Cantonment. People are claiming this to be an outcome of the coronavirus lockdown that now wildlife and nature are experiencing freedom in a positive way.
However, this is not true and this is an old video from Gujarat’s Amreli district.
People are sharing the video which has over 5,500 views.
The post has been archived here.
The same video was shared on twitter also.
Lion cubs at dhaula kuan DELHI cantt pic.twitter.com/v9LvfJdKkU
— Deep (@Deep43156398) May 7, 2020
The tweet has been archived here.
Through keyframe search of the video, we obtained the information about the lioness and the cubs to be Asiatic lions.
On searching with keywords related to the video, several videos pop up from the Gir national park in Gujarat. This is the only place in the world where Asiatic lions, as seen in the video, are found.
A video on YouTube from “GirIndiaFilms HD” shows similar lioness and cubs strolling on the streets. This particular video was uploaded on 11th January 2016. The description said “A Lioness with 4 cubs to walk out on the pipavav shipyard road Unique video near Gir forest Gujarat.” It furthermore included information about Asiatic lions.
On comparing the two videos, we found some similarities in the background and the roads which hints that this video could be from Gujarat. The following collage shows the comparison, the image on the left is a screen grab from the viral video is claimed to be from Delhi and the one of the right is a screen grab from the YouTube video from Gujarat.
According to a Times of India report, Ishwar Singh, Principal Chief Conservator of forests said, “Several people asked us to verify the authenticity of the clip. The location does not look like Dhaula Kuan and it is impossible to sight lions in Delhi. It is most likely an old video shot somewhere in Junagadh in Gujarat. We can say with certainty that the clip was not shot in the capital. People should be careful before posting or sharing such videos.”
Hence, the claims attached to the viral video of the lions strolling in Delhi, are false.