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Photographs showing people burning fabric resembling a flag while an AIMIM party's banner hangs in the backdrop has been doing the rounds with the claim that local leaders of AIMIM along with Salim Ansari, District President of Pratapgarh, Uttar Pradesh, burnt the saffron flag.
The photos were shared by a Facebook page, Pushpendra Kulshrestha Fans Club which has over 200,000 followers. The post was shared over 1000 times.
The All India Majlis Ittehad ul Muslimeen (AIMIM) is a political party which says that it is dedicated to protect and advance the rights of Muslims, Dalits, BCs, Minorities and all other underprivileged communities in India.
'Saffron Flag' or the "Bhagwa Dhwaj" is considered to be an embodiment of Hindu culture.
AIMIM leaders burnt the Saffron flag.
The claim is false.
In the AIMIM banner that hangs in the background the word, 'Nepal Murdabad' can be seen clearly. 'Murdabad' is chanted before a person's name when a crowd is calling for the person's dismissal or downfall.
The Logical Indian reached out to the Pratapgarh police regarding the issue.
Pratapgarh's Additional Superintendent of Police Surendra P Dwivedi confirmed that the news of AIMIM leaders burning the saffron flag is false.
The police had put an official statement on the matter.
"The flag displayed in the said case belongs to the country of Nepal, Nepal's flag has been burnt by the members of AIMIM party, Pratapgarh in protest against the Parliament of Nepal allegedly including India's region as part of Nepalese territory (translated to English)" the Pratapgarh police wrote.
उक्त प्रकरण में प्रदर्शित झण्डा नेपाल देश का है, नेपाल देश की संसद द्वारा कथित रूप से भारतीय क्षेत्र को नेपाली क्षेत्र बताये जाने के विरोध में एआईएमआईएम पार्टी प्रतापगढ़ के सदस्यों द्वारा नेपाल का झण्डा जलाया गया है। pic.twitter.com/naSVmIPlmp— PRATAPGARH POLICE (@pratapgarhpol) June 17, 2020
The police furnished a copy of the memorandum given to the local administration by the Pratapgarh unit of AIMIM demanding that the people of Nepal should not enter India without a visa.
A video statement by Mohammed Israr, former district president of AIMIM was included by the police.
उक्त प्रकरण में झण्डा नेपाल देश का है, नेपाल देश की संसद द्वारा कथित रूप से भारतीय क्षेत्र को नेपाली क्षेत्र बताये जाने के विरोध में एआईएमआईएम पार्टी प्रतापगढ़ के सदस्यों द्वारा नेपाल का झण्डा जलाया गया है। pic.twitter.com/0QZpFpdOcK— PRATAPGARH POLICE (@pratapgarhpol) June 17, 2020
He said that a bill was passed in Nepal's parliament, in which Kalapani which fall under the Indian territory is included in Nepal's map. He said that on that day he had burnt the Nepali flag. He added that he had no intention to hurt the sentiment of any communities.
In the photo included as part of the police statement, one can clearly see Nepal's flag being burnt.
Below is the picture of Nepal's flag for clarity.
The Logical Indian reached out to the Pratapgarh, UP wing of AIMIM, who confirmed that the news is false.
"In the said case, the flag belongs to Nepal country, Nepal's flag has been burnt by the members of AIMIM Party Pratapgarh in protest against the India's region being declared as Nepalese territory by the Parliament of Nepal country (translated to English)" they said in a reply to a text on Facebook.
Mohammed Israr had posted about the event on Facebook.
Reportedly, on June 14, Nepal's lower house cleared a constitutional amendment bill to give legal backing to a map showing areas such as Lipulekh as Nepalese territory, prompting India to claim that such "artificial enlargement of claims" violates an understanding to resolve boundary issues through dialogue or discussion.
The map depicts Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura as part of Nepal. The bill was supported by all the 258 lawmakers present and voting.
#Nepal Parliament on Saturday unanimously passed a Constitution Amendment Bill putting #Kalapani, #Limpiyadhura and Lipu Lekh in its official map.— Nepali Times (@NepaliTimes) June 13, 2020
Minister of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Shiva Maya Tumbahamphe tabled the bill for discussion.
Photos by @BikramRai0 pic.twitter.com/xITB5RtlFO
In response to the development on Saturday, India's external affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said: "We have noted that the House of Representatives of Nepal has passed a constitution amendment bill for changing the map of Nepal to include parts of Indian territory. We have already made our position clear on this matter."
"This artificial enlargement of claims is not based on historical fact or evidence and is not tenable. It is also violative of our current understanding to hold talks on outstanding boundary issues," he added.
Therefore, the act depicted in the viral post had no communal connections, contrary to popular claims.
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