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Fact Check: Oli’s Wife Radhika Objected To His Attempt To Protect Highly Corrupt Individuals? No, Viral Claim Is Misleading

Sanjeeb Phuyal is the Nepali Editor of Newschecker based in Kathmandu, Nepal. He brings over a decade of experience writing and editing news. In his previous stint, he worked as online editor for The Kathmandu Post. With the growth of social media platforms—and the ever-growing competition amongst media outlets to churn out breaking news, he feels that fact-checking every piece of information has become essential today than ever before.

Claim
CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli’s wife Radhika raised objection after he tried to protect highly corrupt individuals
Fact
Radhhika Shakya praising Oli in July 2020 video

A viral clip purportedly showing Radhika Shakya, wife of former Prime Minister and Chairman of Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist (CPN-UML) KP Sharma Oli, raising objection after her husband allegedly attempted to protect highly corrupt individuals.

The video surfaces at a time when a major corruption scandal incriminating top politicians and human rights activities came into light.  Earlier in May, an investigation found the involvement of former ministers and top-ranking bureaucrats in fraudulently certifying Nepali citizens as Bhutanese refugees for sending them to the United States of America, thereby exposing the deep-rooted nexus of corruption.  

Against this backdrop, TikTok user @lplokentmg posted a video showing wife of former Prime Minister and CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli speaking to the media with the text superimposed on it reading, “Radhika Shakya raises objection after KP Oli tried to protect highly corrupt individuals. Radhika reveals the secrets of KP Oli.”

In the 48-second video, Radhika says, “They are busy holding meetings every day and night to hatch conspiracies. They are also getting older, aren’t they? They are thinking too much with their ageing mind. And that is not for constructive thought but destruction. This makes me laugh about them and also feel sorry for them, what are they running for?”  An image of KP Sharma Oli is also placed on the left side of the video frame.The archived version of the TikTok video can be seen here.

The video posted on July 30 has garnered 12.8k likes, 946 users have shared it and 696 people have commented until the last count.

Newschecker found the claim to be misleading.

Fact Check /Verification

To check the authenticity of the claim made in the viral video, Newschecker split the video into several keyframes and conducted reverse searches on them. However, the results didn’t yield any results matching the video.

We, then, conducted a search on YouTube by using relevant keywords and found a video, dated 5 July, 2023, published on the YouTube channel named Harek News TV.  On listening to the video report, we found that Shakya was referring to another chairman of then Nepal Communist Party (NCP), Pushpa Kamal Dahal. The video report clearly states that Radhika Shakya, referring to NCP leader Dahal, suggested that Dahal shouldn’t stress his ageing mind by thinking deeply.  

The footage from 3.49-minute onwards exactly matched the frame from the viral video. Before the viral clip, Shakya indirectly says referring to Dahal, “Those who are attacking KP Sharma Oli are in tension. Because they [Pushpa Kamal Dahal] are agitated and holding meetings day in and out. She was speaking at a programme organised to mark the 40th birth anniversary of litterateur Jhamak Kumari Ghimire.

Taking a clue from the video, we dug further and came across a news article, dated 18 July, 2020, published on Hatmakhabar online. The news article reported that PM Oli’s wife Radhika Shakya said that she feels sorry for the leaders who are against Oli.  

In the July of 2020, internal rift in the then ruling Nepal Communist Party had been growing due to confrontation between then Prime Minister Oli and party executive chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal.

Our findings clearly show that Oli’s wife is saying that Oli doesn’t have any mental distress and rather those who are against him are stressing their ageing mind. The claim made in the viral video is a false narrative.

Conclusion

The viral video doesn’t show KP Oli’s wife Radhika raising objection to Oli’s move to protect corrupt individuals. The old clip from July 2020 actually shows her praising her husband and saying those who are against him are suffering mental stress.

Result: Missing Context

Sources
Harek News TV /YouTube, 5 July 2020
Hatmakhabar.com, 18 July, 2020
My Republica online , 20 April, 2020


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Sanjeeb Phuyal is the Nepali Editor of Newschecker based in Kathmandu, Nepal. He brings over a decade of experience writing and editing news. In his previous stint, he worked as online editor for The Kathmandu Post. With the growth of social media platforms—and the ever-growing competition amongst media outlets to churn out breaking news, he feels that fact-checking every piece of information has become essential today than ever before.

Sanjeeb Phuyal
Sanjeeb Phuyal
Sanjeeb Phuyal is the Nepali Editor of Newschecker based in Kathmandu, Nepal. He brings over a decade of experience writing and editing news. In his previous stint, he worked as online editor for The Kathmandu Post. With the growth of social media platforms—and the ever-growing competition amongst media outlets to churn out breaking news, he feels that fact-checking every piece of information has become essential today than ever before.

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