Fake news: Image from Telugu movie Vikramarkudu shared as woman ‘abducted’ by TMC leader

Sandeshkhali, a village in the North 24-Parganas district of West Bengal, has been at the forefront of political controversy for nearly a month.
Screenshots of the viral posts.
Screenshots of the viral posts.(Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)
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Sandeshkhali, a village in the North 24-Parganas district of West Bengal, has been at the forefront of political controversy for nearly a month. A report by the Deccan Herald dated February 15, 2024, highlights allegations of sexual harassment and other atrocities linked to TMC leaders, sparking a political uproar not just in the state but nationwide. The Kolkata High Court has taken suo motu cognizance of these allegations, requesting a detailed report from the state government. Opposition parties, including the BJP and Congress, have called for stringent action.

What is the claim?

Amid this turmoil, a photo of a woman standing next to a man flashing a victory sign has been spreading across social media platforms, alleging to depict a Hindu woman kidnapped and detained by a TMC leader in Sandeshkhali, West Bengal.

This image has gained significant traction on X (formerly known as Twitter), with one particular post amassing over 165,000 views and approximately 2,000 reshares at the time of this report. An archived version of the post can be accessed here. Further archives of similar claims are available here and here

Screenshots of the viral posts
Screenshots of the viral posts(Source: X/ Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, the contested image originates from the 2006 Telugu film 'Vikramarkudu,' directed by S.S. Rajamouli.

What is the truth?

A reverse image search led us to a 3-minute and 24-second video on YouTube, posted by Sri Balaji Movies, a digital Telugu entertainment channel, on November 12, 2013. The description confirms the scene is from 'Vikramarkudu,' a film that debuted in 2006, starring Ravi Teja and Anushka Shetty under the direction of S. S. Rajamouli. The exact frame matching the viral image appears at the 2:18 mark.

We found that the film 'Vikramarkudu' was dubbed in Hindi and released as 'Pratighaat - A Revenge,' available on a YouTube channel named 'Hindi Dubbed Movies.'

The scene in question shows the character of Inspector Mohanti visiting an influential MLA's residence with his two children to search for his missing wife. Upon sighting his wife on the balcony, he cannot voice his concerns due to the intimidation from the MLA's henchmen. At this moment, the MLA's son, Munna, signals that the wife will be released in two days. The 'victory sign' in the viral image is actually an indication of 'two days' within the context of the film. In 'Vikramarkudu,' the inspector's wife is portrayed by Madhuri Sen, and the character misidentified as a TMC leader in the viral narrative is played by Amit Tiwari, who assumes the role of Munna.

Notably, the Bollywood film 'Rowdy Rathore', featuring Akshay Kumar and released in 2012, was a remake of 'Vikramarkudu.'

What is happening in Sandeshkhali?

The controversy in Sandeshkhali was ignited following a raid on January 5 by Enforcement Directorate officials at the residence of TMC leader Sheikh Shahjahan, according to The Indian Express. Shahjahan evaded capture with the help of his associates, who also attacked the ED officials, and has since been absconding.

Subsequent protests by a group of women, demanding Shahjahan's arrest for alleged sexual misconduct and harassment spanning years, led to the targeting of properties owned by Shiba Prasad Hazra and Uttam Sardar, two of Sheikh’s aides who were accused of complicity. The BJP has accused the TMC government of protecting Shahjahan, a suspect in rape cases, leading to heightened protests, while Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee alleges BJP's involvement in instigating violence in Sandeshkhali.

The verdict

A scene from a 2006 Telugu movie has been shared with the false claim that it shows a Hindu woman abducted by a TMC leader in West Bengal. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

(Translated by Azra Ali)

This article is republished from Logically Facts under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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