A video which shows five people attacking a young man with axes, sticks and bricks has been viral since 2018 with the claim of depicting a young man being lynched in India.
In the video, the attackers hit the young man with axes as he begs for mercy, and they, heedless to his pleading, continue till he collapses and falls silent.
(The Quint has not included the video in this story because of its graphic nature.)
The video recently resurfaced on social media after a Twitter profile called ‘John lewis the best’ shared the video with the caption, “But this is called #Lynching Liberals wherever on planet earth it is happening. Maybe just to target @narendramodi.”
A graphic on the video says that under Modi’s rule, law is not needed, and asks the video to be shared widely enough “that it reaches Narendra Modi’s ministers.” The insinuation, therefore, is that the video depicts an incident which happened in India.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
While digging around to unearth the origin of the video, we came across another aspect of it becoming viral.
In May 2018, when the video was being circulated on social media, a family in Uttar Pradesh’s Sambhal saw it and claimed that it was their son being killed by the five assailants.
Their son, identified as Ajab Singh, who hailed from Sambhal, had reportedly gone to Delhi to work as a labourer and the family had not heard from him in over six months. Seeing the video, which had been sent to the brother of the man in question on Whatsapp by an unknown person in Azamgarh, the family believed that their son was the person being brutally killed.
News reports by multiple media outlets such as NDTV, News18, Financial Express and The Times of India among others, mentioned the video which was being circulated. However, nobody verified the video and instead accepted it as one of the purported lynching in Delhi or around.
In fact, Zee News even carried a blurred version of the video with the title, ‘Man killed with an axe in UP’s Sambhal- VIRAL.’
But speaking to The Quint, an ANI reporter from UP confirmed that the video being circulated then, seen by the family, was the same as the one in question here, and proved to be from Brazil.
Prakash Pandey, a police officer who was posted in Sambhal at the time and involved with the case, also confirmed that there was such a video in circulation, showing the brutal murder of a man, which the family had seen.
The family had also filed a case at the local police station in Chandausi in May 2018.
In a strange turn of events, the ANI reporter also informed us that the son, Ajab Singh, who was thought to be dead, had actually returned home a few days later, proving that he was not the one in the video. The police officer also confirmed that the son had in fact returned home soon after the family filed a case, causing it to be taken away.
(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9910181818, or e-mail it to us at email@example.com and we’ll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)