Amidst protests led by farmers from Punjab against the centre’s new agricultural bill, a photograph of a Sikh man holding his shoe over the Indian national flag, while many others have stepped on it, is being shared on social media. Facebook user Manohar Bhardwaj shared the image along with the Hindi caption, “Arrest these traitors immediately. They are (farmers) insulting the national flag by rebelling against the country in the name of the farmers’ movement”, which was shared over 700 times. (Archive link)
इन जाहिल गद्दारों को तुरंत गिरफ्तार करो । किसान आंदोलन के नाम पर देश से बगावत कर राष्ट्रीय ध्वज का अपमान कर रहे है।
The same image was shared by Twitter user @RashmiBhadoriy2. She alluded, “It seems as if foreign terrorists have entered the country under the guise of farmers.” (Archive link)
क्या इन्हीं किसानों पर भारत गर्व करता है।ऐसा लगता है जैसे की विदेशी आतंकवादी , किसानों के भेष में देश में घुस आए हैं ।अपने ही देश के झंडे का ऐसा अपमान हमारे राष्ट्रीय ध्वज का अपमान करना ही किसान आन्दोलन है , हमें धिक्का है ऐसे किसान आन्दोलन पर pic.twitter.com/QyHNemfrwx
— रश्मि भदौरिया (@RashmiBhadoriy2) December 5, 2020
2013 image from UK
Alt performed a simple google reverse image search and found the full-size image posted on Twitter in August 2019. We then performed a second reverse image search and came across a blog post on Dal Khalsa from August 17, 2013. According to the blog, “Sikhs, Kashmiris & other minority groups gathered on the 15th of August 2013 in Central London to protest against Indian Oppression & Occupation.” The blog post includes other pictures of the protest, where the same man in a saffron turban can be spotted.
Therefore the image of a Sikh man desecrating the Indian national flag during a protest held in London in 2013 has been falsely shared as the ongoing farmers’ protest.
This post was originally published on Radio Free.