On April 3, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation and requested citizens to turn off all lights for nine minutes at 9 pm on April 5 and light a candle/diya or use the flashlight of their phones to mark the country’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
A 40-second video which shows people flashing their mobile phones has gone viral with multiple claims. Some Facebook and Twitter users have shared the video suggesting, “Brazilian television channels showed Prime Minister Modi’s speech in his country, and Brasilians did it last night itself. (Translated from ब्राज़ील के टेलीविज़न चैनलों ने भारत के प्रधानमंत्री मोदी का भाषण अपने देश में दिखाया और कल रात को ही ब्राज़ीलिओ ने ये कर दिखाया।).
ब्राज़ील के टेलीविज़न चैनलों ने भारत के प्रधानमंत्री मोदी का भाषण अपने देश में दिखाया और कल रात को ही ब्राज़ीलिओ ने ये कर दिखाया। pic.twitter.com/pGOP9GzbFc
— Arghya Jadav (@ArghyaJadav) April 6, 2020
Other social media users shared the video and claimed, “Look at this! In Switzerland and several other countries, similar things are happening. In India, just saying light lamps has lead to jealously among some people. (translated from यह देखिए स्विट्जरलैंड में ओर इसी तरह अन्य देशों में भी हो रहा हैं। भारत में दीया जलाने भर कहने से लोगों के दिल जलने दो दिन पहले से ही शुरू हो गया था)”
Alt News also received several requests to fact-check this on WhatsApp (+91 76000 11160) and on their official Android application.
Video shot before PM Modi’s speech
Alt News analysed the viral video using InVid, online video verification tool, and performed a reverse image search. Doing so we found that the viral video was posted on Facebook page Name Above All Names on 28 March 2020. As per the description, the video shows people praying to Jesus in Brazil.
Facebook page Brazil Pera Christ also posted this video on March 27. Since PM Modi had made the ‘9PM-9minute’ announcement on April 3, the video cannot represent an event that took place as a reaction to his speech. Therefore, while Alt News was unable to independently verify where the video was shot, it certainly does not show Brazilians joining India using the flashlights of their cellphones as per PM Modi’s appeal.