Amidst the recent controversy over the statements by former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma, there has been a deluge of disinformation across social media. A video of several men crowding outside a building has gone viral across social media with the claim that they are people from Qatar who had to return to India after the recent controversy.
Nupur Sharma, one of BJP's national spokespersons, was suspended by the party for her statements about Prophet Mohammed during a television debate. The party had stated that it is against any ideology that insults or demeans any sect or religion.
The 24 seconds video shows a crowd gathered in a building with buses visible in a distance. The person filming the video narrates, "Look at these people who have gathered here to buy bus tickets. Redco International. Look how many people have gathered here, must be at least 7000." The viral posts claim that Hindu Indians have been fired from their jobs in Qatari companies and have been sent to India due to the comments on Islam and Prophet Mohammed by Nupur Sharma.
A Twitter user shared this video and wrote, "अरब देशों से हिन्दुस्तानियों को वापस भेजा जा रहा हे ....गोडसे वाली नफ़रत ने पेहले ही देश के युवाओं को बेरोज़गार बना कर ब्रबाद कर चुकी हे ...जो बच के अरब देशों मे नौकरी कर रहे थे उनकी नौकरी भी इस नफ़रत का शिकार हो गई."
[English Translation: Indians are being sent back from Arab countries.... the hatred of Godse has already ruined the youth of the country by making them unemployed.]
A Facebook user wrote, नूपुर शर्मा के बयान के बाद कतर भारतीय को अपने कंपनी से निकालकर आत्मनिर्भर बनने को भारत भेज रही है|
[English Translation: After the statement of Nupur Sharma, Qatar is sending Hindu Indians out of their companies and sending them to India to become self-reliant.] The term 'self-reliant' or 'आत्मनिर्भर' is a jab at the popular catchphrase of the BJP and PM Modi.
It is being widely shared on social media with a similar claim. We received messages on our WhatsApp fact check no. +91-6364000343 requesting to fact check the claim.
Screengrabs of requests received on the TLI WhatsApp fact check number
The Logical Indian fact check team verified the viral claim and found it to be false. The viral video is not related to Nupur Sharma's remark.
We conducted a keyword search for the name of the company that the person filming the video had mentioned. Upon searching 'Redco International', we came across the company's official website where it is stated that the company is an industrial manufacturing and contracting group based in Qatar.
Looking through the video using the keywords search, we came across the following video on YouTube titled, "Indian worker sending back to India from Qatar | Redco International" uploaded on YouTube on June 9, 2022, by user 'Mr Soothe'.
We then conducted another keyword search with this information and came across the same video uploaded by user 'QN Qatar' on YouTube on March 29, 2022.
Going through the channel, we came across several videos regarding the incident regarding Redco. The following video shows a few workers claiming that they are from Redco as a part of a protest against the company.
Another video on the channel shows several men in an argument with another person regarding the non-payment of salaries. This video was uploaded on March 23, 2022.
In another video uploaded on March 23, 2022, protestors can also be seen crowding the roads, which the narrator of the video claims that Redco employees have taken to obstructing traffic on the roads to protest against the non-payment of salaries.
In this following video, an office with the signboard 'Redco International' can be seen with the logo matching up with the company's official logo. Below you can see the comparision.
The video shows men arguing outside the office while a crowd of presumably Redco employees watches on. The narrator can be heard repeating the claims of non-payment of salaries for the workers in the video.
We conducted another keyword search across Facebook and came across this post by a user 'Nizam Sarkar Glb'. The post uploaded on June 9, 2022, carries the same viral video. The caption reads as follows, "It is being claimed that this is footage from Redco International Company where due to the controversial comments from some BJP leaders, 7000 people are being removed from their jobs. This video actually shows an incident that is three months old. The company was running in losses so the workers were unpaid and were leaving the company."
We conducted another keyword search for the term 'Qatar workers colony' to verify from which location the viral video was shot. We came across this video by The Peninsula Newspaper uploaded on November 1, 2015. The opening frames of the video show buildings similar to the ones noticed in the viral video. The title of the video reads, "The biggest Labor City in Qatar and GCC"
We came across several reports which documented this 'Labor City' in Qatar. The construction of the complex has been reported by RT.com in a report published on November 2, 2015. As per the report, the complex has been built just outside of Doha. The 'Labor City' reportedly accommodates around 70,000 foreign workers, who come to Qatar for its construction projects.
We also came across reports by several outlets that reports on the backlash by the Qatari government against India following the controversial remarks by Nupur Sharma. This Dainik Jagran report was published on 8 June 2022, which states that the Qatari government was displeased following the comments by BJP leaders over Islam. The Rajya Sabha member Sushil Modi urged the Qatari government to provide places for worship and land for the cremation of Hindu Indians, as the dead body has to be either buried or brought back to India.
As per a Arab News report published on 7 June 2022, several stores in Qatar had removed Indian products from their shelves as a protest against the comments by BJP leaders.
However, we found no credible news reports of 7000 Hindu Indian employees being removed from their jobs following the Nupur Sharma comments.
In our investigation, we found out that the viral video was likely shot in the Labor City of Doha, Qatar. The viral video shows workers leaving via buses after Redco International provided them passage back to their countries. There were several arguments between workers and non-payment of salaries for three months by Redco International. The arguments led to protests which led the company to offer disgruntled employees passage back to their countries.
The incident took place in March 2022 whereas the Nupur Sharma controversy erupted after her comments in early June 2022, according to our reports. We found no credible news reports of 7000 Hindu Indian employees being removed from their jobs following the Nupur Sharma comments. Hence, the viral claim is false.
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