No, a Christian couple was not set on fire by RSS workers in UP

Reported on 2019-10-14 18:35:53.0 by Himani Joshi

Rumour

A video is going viral on social media in which two people can be seen with burn injuries on the ground, while people around try to rescue them. One can also hear the cry of a young boy in the background.

The video is being shared with a claim that “RSS Hindu radicals” had set a Christian couple on fire after the wife-husband resisted the forcible occupation of their land in Uttar Pradesh. 

A Twitter user Rani Mukherji(@NotMukerji) tweeted the video with a caption, "UP, India: Christian couple in Uttar Pradesh was set on fire by Hindu radicals RSS after the man resisted the forcible occupation of his land. Son kept sobbing.. this is horrifying! the world has turned a blind eye to what is happening in India".

The account has been suspended now but the video was viewed more than a thousand times. Here is a screenshot of the tweet.

The same video has been shared by many people on social media with the same claim.

You can watch the video here:

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Our Investigation

In reply to Mukerji’s tweet, Mathura Police posted a tweet with a clarification, "@NotMukerji this couple was neither Christian nor set on fire by those mentioned. Your tweet is malicious and totally untrue. You should delete this immediately or face legal action".

The official Twitter handle of Mathura Police shared the complete facts around the incident in question and clarified that the allegations are completely baseless. 

According to Mathura Police, the couple set themselves on fire within the precincts of Surir police station in Uttar Pradesh's Mathura district on August 28, 2019. The police had failed to take action against their neighbour, also a local muscleman, who had been harassing them for long. The entire incident took place in front of the couple’s minor son, who cried while shooting a video of his parents going up in flames.

The victims--aged 45 and 43--were allegedly being harassed by one Satyapal Singh, 23. According to police, the couple apparently doused themselves in kerosene before arriving at the police station around 8 am. As soon as they entered the boundary wall of the police station, they set themselves afire, leaving bystanders shell-shocked.

 An FIR has been registered against the accused under section 452 (House-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint), 354 (Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 324 (Voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons) on the basis of a complaint filed by the victim Jugender at Surir Police station.

Fact

The viral claim is false that a Christian couple in Uttar Pradesh was set on fire by Hindu radicals of RSS after they resisted the forcible occupation of their land.

The Hindu couple self-immolated themselves over sexual harassment of wife by a neighbour and police inaction. 

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