No, video of boy reciting Azaan in school is not from Jharkhand – Alt News



A clip of a primary school student rendering Azaan is going viral. Social media users have claimed that it is from a village in Jharkhand where 75% of the population is Muslim. The claim alleges that it is mandatory for Hindu children to also “recite Islamic prayers”.

Twitter user @OMahakaaleshwar was among those who shared this video.

It has also been shared several times on Facebook with the same claim. Find posts here, here and here.

The viral posts are circulating against the backdrop of a recent report published in The New Indian Express that states schools in Muslim-majority areas in a district in Jharkhand have started granting holidays on Fridays instead of Sundays. As per the report, students of 100 primary schools in Karmatand, Narayanpur and Jamtara blocks in the Jamtara district of Jharkhand are following this norm, citing that 70% of the students in these schools hail from the Muslim community.

Fact-check

Alt News performed a Google reverse image on a screengrab from the viral video. This led us to a News18 Assam report from June 6, carrying the same image. As per the report, the video was taken at the Hemlai Gyan Bikash Primary School, Mariani in upper Assam’s Jorhat district.

Below we have juxtaposed a graphic comparing the visuals from the viral video with the thumbnail present in the report by News18 Assam.

Through a Google keyword search, Alt News found a Times of India (TOI) report published on June 7. As per TOI, the Assam education department has sent a show cause notice to the headmaster of the elementary school after a student rendered Azaan during the prayer time in Gunotsav. Gunotsav is an educational exercise aimed at assessing and evaluating the quality of education in schools. The evaluation is usually done by high-ranking government officials, including Ministers, IAS, IPS, IFS officers, and Class–I & II officers. The Gujarat model of education inspired the idea of Gunotsav with the same nomenclature.

Below, we have added the show cause notice that was sent to the accused teacher. The notice was procured from the News18 article.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Speaking to TOI, Jorhat district education officer Subhalakshmi Rajkumari said, as per the verbal admission of the accused teacher the boy rendered Azaan when the students lined up to perform extra-curricular activities in front of the external evaluators during prayer time.

This video has also been shared on Twitter multiple times, noting that it is from Assam.

Thus a video of a child rendering Azaan at a government primary school in Assam was circulated with the false claim that it is from Jharkhand. The false claim is in the context of recent reports on schools in Muslim-majority areas in a Jharkhand district giving Friday holidays instead of Sundays.

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