Fact Check: Man who waved tricolor at Capitol is from Kochi

person waving an Indian flag during the siege of the Capitol building. Some shared these with claims that the person....

By Satya Priya BN  Published on  9 Jan 2021 3:57 AM GMT
Fact Check: Man who waved tricolor at Capitol is from Kochi

Many social media users have shared the pictures and videos of a person waving an Indian flag during the siege of the Capitol building.

Some shared these with claims that the person with the Indian flag is a blind Bhakt and Modi supporter.

"Some blind #bhakts have joined the attack on democracy in the US with our Indian Flag, which represents the hopes and aspirations of millions of people in India. Why can't these morons use BJP Flag instead or use RSS one? The man behind `Ab Ki Baar Trump Sarkaar' should answer!!!" reads one message.

"One Bhakt went with an Indian Flag to Riot at Capitol Hill. These Chaddies," reads another message

"See the Indian flag among these Riot wingers in the USA... Most probably Modi bhakt," said one user

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Fact Check:

The claim that the person waving the Indian Flag is a 'Modi Bhakt' or 'Hindu Bhakt' is FALSE.

When searched with the keywords 'Indian Flag at the capitol siege', we found several articles published in the mainstream media about the person who waved the Indian flag during the protest at the capitol building.

According to a report published in Times of India, the group which waved the tricolor was led by a Keralite named Vincent Xavier Palathingal from Kochi. While speaking to TOI from Washington, he said he was carrying the Indian flag to show support of Indian Americans to President Donald Trump and was not part of the violence inside the Capitol building.

Vinson Palathingal, also known as Vincent Xavier, a Keralite Christian by ethnicity, tweeted on Thursday pictures of Indian, South Korean, and Iranian flags at the protest site.

His tweet said: "American patriots - Vietnamese, Indian, Korean & Iranian origins, & from so many other nations & races, who believe massive voter fraud has happened, joined rally yesterday in solidarity with Trump. Peaceful protestors, who were exercising rights."

Talking to CNN News 18, Xavier said that he was not part of the violence that followed when the mob breached Capitol Hill, leading to the deaths of five persons. He claimed he was there only for the peaceful march. He unfurled the Indian flag alongside many Americans who too waved the US flag in support of Donald Trump.

"I regret the violence, but I don't regret me being there. It was not a riot, it was a peaceful protest," said Vincent Xavier, a Republican Party supporter.

In an apparent embarrassment for Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, who criticized the presence of the tricolor at the protest, Xavier also seems to be close to the veteran Parliamentarian of the grand old party.

The identity of Xavier was shared on Twitter by BJP MP Varun Gandhi, who alleged that Xavier was a "dear friend" of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor.

Xavier shared a picture of him dining with Shashi Tharoor in April 2015 stating that he invited him to attend FOMAA Kerala convention.

So, the person waving the Indian Flag is NOT a Bhakt or Sanghi as being claimed on social media. He is a Trump supporter with affiliation to leaders like Shashi Tharoor. He is a Kerala Christian now settled in Virginia, USA.

Therefore, the claims are FALSE.

Claim Review:Man who waved tricolor at Capitol is Modi Bakht
Claimed By:Social Media Users
Claim Reviewed By:Newsmeter
Claim Source:Social Media
Claim Fact Check:False
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