A video has been viewed tens of thousands of times in Facebook posts that claim it shows the Ram temple in the Indian city of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh collapsing into a river. The claim is false; the video was filmed in West Bengal and has circulated in news reports about a temple that eroded into a river.
“Where Ram temple has been built in place of Babri mosque. That Ram temple is mixing with water today,” reads a Bengali-language Facebook post shared on November 2.
The video — viewed more than 35,000 times — shows a building collapsing into a river, while people in the background are heard screaming.
The site has become a symbol of India’s Hindu-Muslim divide as a 16th century mosque called Babri used to sit on the same patch of land.
In 1992, tens of thousands of Hindus tore down the mosque to pave the way for a temple.
However, the claim is false.
Reverse image searches of the video’s keyframes found similar footage showing the same event posted on YouTube on October 25, 2019.
The YouTube video is titled: “A Shiva Temple has been destroyed today” and states that the temple is located in Mathurapur town in Malda district in West Bengal.
Below is a screenshot comparison of the video in the misleading posts (left) and YouTube video (right), with the corresponding features highlighted.
A similar video of the incident was aired by Indian media organisation News 18 on October 25, 2019.
“Erosion in a river in Malda, the temple sank in the riverbed”, the Bengali report reads.
The location of the incident can be found here on Google Street View.
Below is a screenshot comparison of the video in the misleading posts (left) and a Google Street View of the temple’s location in Mathurapur (right).