Hyderabad: India has extended the COVID-19 lockdown till 17 May. Amidst this, many videos targeting Muslim community in the country have been doing the rounds. One such video is from Hyderabad’s Tolichowki where some Muslims allegedly staged a protest demanding the reopening of a mosque during the lockdown.

The video was widely shared on Facebook with a caption that, in English, translates to: “Muslim men are causing a disturbance at Tolichowki, under the flyover bridge, demanding the reopening of a mosque.”

Tolichowki Masjid open karo bolke Musalman Gadbad kar rahe at Tolichowki under flyover bridge Hyderabad Telangana

Rajesh Lahoti ಅವರಿಂದ ಈ ದಿನದಂದು ಪೋಸ್ಟ್ ಮಾಡಲಾಗಿದೆ ಭಾನುವಾರ, ಮೇ 3, 2020

The video was also shared on YouTube.

It was also shared by BJP’s Hyderabad vice-president T.Uma Mahendra on his Facebook page.

Uma Mahender

Fact Check:

NewsMeter did a simple search using the keywords ‘Tolichowki Protest’ and found that some migrants had protested demanding permission to travel to their homes.

Local channels have reported the incident. According to a report by Siasat Daily, “The west zone DCP AR Srinivas told the workers that they would convey their pleas to the higher-ups of the state government and urged them to withdraw their protest program. Convinced at this, the migrant workers withdrew their sit-in protest. Later, speaking to media persons, the DCP said that the migrant workers came on the roads following false reports that the authorities were arranging special trains for migrant workers to drop them at their native places.”
Sakshi Post also covered the protest.

Political strategist Syed Abdahu Kashaf from Hyderabad filed a case against T.Uma Mahendra for sharing the video with a false claim. Speaking to NewsMeter, he said, “I filed a case with the cybercrime police against Uma Mahender and two other people who shared the video. The police have not initiated any action yet.”

The BJP leader later apologized for sharing the video.
T Uma Mahendra Tolichowki protest

Hence the claim that Muslims protested at Tolichowki demanding the reopening of a mosque is false. The video is of migrant labourers demanding permission to go home.

Aiswarya Sriram

Aiswarya Sriram is a budding multimedia journalist and is currently working for NewsMeter. A graduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, Aiswarya has earlier worked with The Logical Indian and has interned with Republic TV. Aiswarya, a Tamilian who was born and brought up in Mumbai, loves to do rural reporting. She has visited Byadgi Taluk of Karnataka, to write about the issues faced by chilli factory workers there, earlier in 2019. A craft enthusiast, Aiswarya also does quilling, painting and glass work. On her off-days, she loves to read crime-thrillers and watch anime. She primarily reports on civic issues, GHMC, human-interesting features, and fact-checking video stories.

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