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HomeEnglishFact Check: Video Showing RSP By-Poll Candidate Limbu Goes Viral With False...

Fact Check: Video Showing RSP By-Poll Candidate Limbu Goes Viral With False Audio Laid On Top

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
Rastriya Swatantra Party candidate for Ilam -2 by-election Milan Limbu has a notorious background.
Fact
No, the viral video shows RSP candidate Milan Limbu with a false audio laid on top.

A 16-second video claiming that Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP) candidate for by-election in Ilam constituency-2 has a notorious background and he had allegedly misappropriated millions of rupees deposited by people in a finance cooperative, is going viral on TikTok.

Earlier on March 28, Rastriya Swatantra Party had announced Milan Limbu as its candidate for the Ilam-2 by-election of the House of Representatives. The Election Commission decided to hold the by-election on April 27 after the seat became vacant following the demise of former Speaker and CPN-UML lawmaker (MP) Subas Chandra Nembang.

Against this backdrop, TikTok user @ramblontamang10 posted a video showing RSP candidate Milan Limbu coming out of the party office and speaking to the media. Text superimposed on the video reads, “Former Maoist cadre is now RSP candidate for Ilam-2.” A voice-over accompanying the video presented in a narration style says, “This person who gobbled up the savings deposited by hundreds of people once used to sell tea outside Gopi Krishna cinema hall in Kathmandu. He is an illiterate and still known as Rame nearby Gopi Krishna. He was a professional gangster.”

The video posted on March 29 has garnered 5609 likes, 250 people have shared it and 393 users have commented until the time of publishing this article.

The archived version of the TikTok video can be seen here.

Newschecker found the claim to be misleading.

Fact Check /Verification

To check the authenticity of the claim made in the viral video, Newscheker took a keyframe from the viral video and conducted reverse searches on them. However, the results didn’t match the viral video.

So, we closely observed the video and noticed the watermark of ‘Online Khoj Tv’ on the screen. Taking a clue from it, we searched for a YouTube channel named ‘Online Khoj TV’ and found it. On checking the channel, we found a video, dated March 28, 2024, showing Rastriya Swatantra Party candidate Milan Limbu’s response to the media on why he would win the by-election slated for April 27. We found that the video frame exactly matched the viral video. In the original video, the reporter in the background says, “Dear viewers, we are speaking from the party office of RSP and you can see RSP candidate for Ilam constituency-2 Milan Limbu.”

We, then, searched for background of Limbu and found an article, dated March 29, 2024, published in the Himalayan Times online. The article confirmed that Milan was the general secretary of the Federation of Nepalese Indigenous Journalists (FoNIJ) and secretary at Press Centre Nepal. The article also noted that Limbu was affiliated with CPN (Maoist Centre).

Further, we diligently listened to the audio and found a clue that the audio matched the reporting of Yoho television. So, we conducted a search on the YouTube channel of Yoho Television by using several relevant keywords and found a video, whose audio from 2.05-minute to 2.21-minute exactly matched the viral video. The video, dated January 23, 2023, was actually exposing the notoriety of the chairman of Lalupate Saving and Credit Cooperative, Ram Kumar Shrestha.

Thus, our findings clearly indicated that the viral video shows a clip of RSP candidate for Ilam-2 for the upcoming by-election, while a false audio of a video report exposing a fraud chairperson of a savings cooperative based in Chabahil, Kathmandu.

Conclusion

No, Rastriya Swatantra Party candidate for the upcoming by-election in Ilam-2 Milan Limbu is not a fraud with a notorious background. The viral video actually shows Limbu speaking to the media outside RSP party office with an unrelated audio laid on top.

Result: Altered Video

Sources
Online Khoj TV /YouTube, March 28, 2024
Yoho Television HD /YouTube, Jan 23, 2023
Himalayan Times, March 29, 2024


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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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