New Delhi: Badruddin Ajmal, leader of the AIDUF and member of Parliament from Assam has threatened to sue a legal NGO, Legal Rights Observatory (LRO), for uploading an ‘edited’ video that purportedly shows him making “anti-national” comments. The video went viral and was telecast by several local YV channels amid hectic political activity ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections.
The Muslim minority-dominated All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) chief is part of the Mahagathbandhan in Assam, along with the Congress and Left parties that seek to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). AIDUF is contesting 19 of the 126 Assembly seats.
“The video, which went viral in the social media has been checked various independent fact checkers like the Boom and India Today, Anti Fake News War Room. The fact checkers found the video to be doctored,” said a report in NEnow.
“The video was released by an NGO called LRO. This doctored video was released with the intention of damaging AIUDF’s election prospects,” Ajmal was quoted as saying, adding that “some elements with vested interests are trying to derail the Congress-AIUDF alliance.”
The AIDUF leader, also known as the ‘perfume king’ in Assam, Ajmal alleged that parts of a speech that he had delivered ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections were merged in the doctored video.
“I received a video yesterday (Tuesday). It was released by a fake NGO called LRO with the intention to damage our Assam election prospects. The doctored video says the Mughals ruled India for 800 years and the British ruled it for 200 years. And now, INC-AIUDF will make Assam an Islamic state. This is a 100% fake video,” Ajmal told journalists.” He reportedly played out the original video and the ‘doctored’ ones in front of journalists.
The video has also been found to be “doctored” by Alt News, a well-known non-profit fact-checking website in operation since 2017 to detect and curb fake news.
The website on Wednesday afternoon carried a report under the headline “AIUDF’s Badruddin Ajmal didn’t say India will become Islamic nation, 2019 speech clipped”. The report said the clipped video was “made” viral by “regional news and right-wing influencers”, said a report in The Telegraph.
LRO describes itself as “Legal Activism to safeguard Indian interest, Human Rights of armed forces n Hindu cause” , in its Twitter handle .
It had uploaded the video on March 9, seeking immediate arrest of Ajmal and tagging Home Minister Amit Shah.
According to The Telegraph, LRO is linked with BJP’s mentor, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh or RSS.
“In December, the LRO had tweeted, “FIR filed against body run by Badruddin Ajmal for receiving funds from foreign ‘terror financiers.…”
Meanwhile, Congressman-turned BJP leader Himanat Biswa Sarma has called for a thorough probe of the purported video.
On the other side, the AIUDF chief said he had started discussions with his lawyers about filing an FIR and moving the Election Commission against those behind the circulation of the “fake” video.