Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ Admitted to directing two people to defame Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP)
Old video of Dahal speaking at a public discussion edited by laying a false audio on top
A 15-second video allegedly showing Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal admitting to killing 17,000 people during the decade-long armed conflict and instructing Durga Prasain and Santosh Deuja to defame the Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP) has gone viral on TikTok. Newschecker found the claim to be misleading.
TikTok user @vknepalofficial shared a video showing Prime Minister and Chairman of Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre) Pushpa Kamal Dahal speaking passionately at a public programme. Text superimposed on the video reads, “I ordered Durga and Santosh to mudsling RSP [Rastriya Swatantra Party].” A voice-over accompanying the video says, “I am the killer of 17,000 people and I directed Durga Prasain and Santosh Deuja to defame the Rastriya Swatantra Party. Many mothers lost their offspring, and many women lost their husbands because of me. Now I should be sent behind bars, then only the deceased souls will rest in peace and the country will be revamped.” The archived version of the TikTok video can be seen here.
The video posted on April 10 has garnered 1176 likes, 49 users have shared it and 95 people have commented on it.
Fact Check /Verification
To check the authenticity of the claim made in the viral video, Newschecker took a keyframe from the viral video and conducted a reverse image search. The results led us to a video published on the YouTube Channel named Sutra TV HD. The one-hour-28-minute-long video was posted on 27 March 2021 and its frames resembled viral footage. On checking the video thoroughly, we found that the video frame from 46 minute 39 second onwards exactly matched the viral clip. But in the original footage Dahal can be heard saying, “I removed KP Oli from the party membership. I didn’t do it on my own, I did it in a legal manner, 70 percent of the central committee removed him. But the court endorsed it, what can I say?”
At the public question answer programme, leaders of political parties including Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’, Madhav Kumar Nepal, Minendra Rijal and Mahanta Thakur responded to the questions raised by civilians. The session held at the courtyard of Nepal Academy in Kathmandu was moderated by political science professor Krishna Khanal.
Further, we found a video report of the programme on the YouTube channel of Kantipur Television HD posted on 28 March 2021. The report confirmed that the programme was held in the same location where the leaders were asked questions by professor Krishna Khanal and other journalists present at the discussion.
Our findings indicate that Pushpa Kamal Dahal was speaking about contemporary political issues when he had a fall out with his former co-chair of the Nepal Communist Party KP Sharma Oli after the latter recommended the president to dissolve the parliament and announce fresh elections.
The viral video purporting to show Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal admitting to killing 17,000 people during conflict and directing Durga Prasain and Santosh Deuja to drag the Rastriya Swatantra Party through dirt is misleading. The video actually shows an old clip of Prime Minister Dahal speaking at a public discussion in March 2021. The old video was edited by laying a false audio on top.
Result: Edited Video
Sutra TV HD /YouTube, 27 March 2021
Kantipur TV HD /YouTube, 28 March 2021
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