Viral video of thousands offering Namaz in water is from Bangladesh, not West Bengal

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A video has been going viral on social media with the claim that Amphan, the cyclone that wrecked Bengal forced people to perform namaz in knee-deep water on the occasion of Eid.

Caption: “बंगाल मे तुफान की वजह से ईद की नमाज़.. शायद आपने एसी नमाज़ कभी देखा नहीं होगी।

Translation: “The namaz being offered on Eid amidst the storm in Bengal. You probably have never seen anything like this.

Facebook

The video uploaded on May 29, 2020, in which a group of people is seen offering namaz in knee-deep water has been viewed quite a few times on Facebook.

An account named Desh Premi uploaded this video which has been viewed around 500 times.

Archive Link

Another user uploaded the same video that has been viewed around 400 times.

Archive Link

Twitter

The same video is being shared and viewed on twitter with exactly the same caption.

Truth

While the image really is of people offering Namaz in knee-deep water, the caption attached to it is false. The event happened in Bangladesh and not in West Bengal. 

A simple google search titled ” Namaz in knee deep water” showed a variety of results, one of which being a Youtube video uploaded on May 27, 2019. The video is titled “Thousands Of Bangladeshi Offer EID Namaz In Knee Deep Flood Water! প্রার্থিত ঈদ সালাত হাঁটু গভীর জল” and is the same video that is going viral with a misleading caption.

Moreover, for a more in-depth search, various keyframes were extracted from the video using InVid. They were used to perform a reverse image search on Google and led to a variety of articles published by various media agencies in Bangladesh proving that the video indeed was shot in Bangladesh.

This particular article, published by Daily Bangladesh on May 25, 2019, consists of a still from the same video. The angle of the image may differ, but the man speaking into the microphone can be identified as the same man in the viral video.

Another article published by The Business Standard on May 26, 2019, has the same still from the viral video too.

More details on the incident can be read here and here.


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Shreya Kachroo

A journalist in making with a thousand questions.