Old video of man soaking wheat bags in water to increase weight given farmers’ protest spin

1 month ago 8

Several Facebook and Twitter users shared a 58-second video of a man sprinkling water on wheat bags. Messages shared along with the video suggested that farmers across Punjab are soaking the grains in water to rot them and sell them off to breweries and distilleries. The message added that these wheat bags are lying in FCI godowns where the farmers sold them for Minimum Support Price (MSP).

Twitter user @NimbuMassala wrote, “1st they soak wheat to increase weight. They claim MSP for this useless produce. This rots in FCI godowns. This rotten grain is bought at throwaway process by distilleries run often by the Star Farmers protesting against. #FarmLaws Double Gains.” (Archive link)

#FarmersProtests decoded
1st they soak wheat to increase weight
⬇️
They claim MSP for this useless produce
⬇️
This rots in FCI godowns
⬇️
This rotten grain is bought at throwaway process by distilleries run often by the Star Farmers protesting against #FarmLaws
🔄 Double Gains pic.twitter.com/2Md25TnOcf

— 𝓐𝓷𝓼𝓱𝓾𝓵 𝓑𝓱𝓪𝓻𝓽𝓲𝔂𝓪 🇮🇳🇮🇳 (@NimbuMassala) January 17, 2021

Another Twitter user @sawalaramparmar claimed the same adding that the viral video is from Punjab. (Archive Link)

Several Facebook users have also shared the video relating it to the ongoing farmers’ protests

Alt news received several fact-check requests on Whatsapp (+917600011160) to verify the video.

Fact-check

We used InVid to break down the viral video into several frames. A subsequent reverse image search led us to a two-year-old Youtube video uploaded by Focus Haryana. The local media outlet did a report about the viral video two years ago. According to the report uploaded on April 28, 2018, “The incident took place in Fatehabad district of Haryana where grain traders were caught soaking wheat bags to increase their weight.” Fatehabad market committee secretary Sanjiv Sachdeva has been quoted in the report stating, “We reached the spot as soon as we heard and conducted an investigation. We found that labourers of the farm 124-B were indeed sprinkling water on wheat bags.” A notice was also issued to the accused farm owner.

Punjab Kesari Haryana too reported on the incident. It said that the accused trader was the state executive member of the National Lokdal Party, Kuljeet Kuladia.

Dainik Bhaskar and News18 carried similar stories. However, Dainik Bhaskar’s report states that Kuljeet Kuladia refuted the accusations and said that the man soaking the wheat bags was not from his farm.

ABP News had fact-checked the video two years ago.

Click to view slideshow.

None of the reports states that the farmers themselves soaked the grain bags. An old video of traders increasing the weight of grain bags to make profits was shared to discredit farmers.

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