Old foreign photos being circulated as Nepal wildfire photos
Sanjog Shiwakoti / March 31, 2021
Nepal’s major cities including Kathmandu and Pokhara are blanketed by the smoke from the raging wildfires across the country over the last few days. In the absence of strong winds, the smog remains suspended over the Nepali sky. On March 26, Kathmandu was ranked the world’s most polluted city, by IQAir, a Swiss air quality technology company. The severe air pollution has forced the government to close schools in many districts including the capital, Kathmandu, for four days. Flights to and from Kathmandu and other airports have been suspended or diverted due to poor visibility.
Social media users have taken to Twitter and Facebook to draw the world’s attention to the disaster. On March 31, #PrayforNepal hashtag trended on Twitter. Social media users have shared various pictures of the wildfires. The photos have been shared here, here on Twitter and here, here on Facebook. But we found that some of these photos are misleading. They were from other countries.
South Asia Check has fact-checked four of the photos circulating on social media.
This photo of a deer fleeing the flames is seventeen years old and from the USA. It was taken on October 28, 2003 in California, according to the American television channel CBS. The channel has credited the photo to the Associated Press, an American news agency.
According to the National Geographic website, this photo of a cow against a fiery background is from the Yosemite National Park in California of the US. The photo was taken on August 24, 2013 by Noah Berger of the European Photo Agency (EPA).
This is a photo taken during a forest fire in Canada in the summer of 2017. According to the Digital Journal, the blaze in British Columbia had caused extensive damage.
According to The Conversation, a network of non-profit media outlets, this photo of the fire is from Indonesia. The digital outlet said the photo was taken by Rony Muharrman for Antara Foto, a photo agency based in Indonesia.
So it is now clear that the social media users shared misleading photos of wildfires from the US, Canada and Indonesia portraying them as Nepal’s photos.
This material is copyrighted but may be used for any purpose by giving due credit to southasiacheck.org.
- Fact Check Some pictures circulating as this week’s Melamchi flooding scenes are old
- Fact Check Video clips falsely suggest Covid-19 vaccine makes human body magnetic
- Fact Check Prime minister’s press advisor wrongly claims Chure hills lie only in Nepal
- Fact Check Birtamod mayor’s misleading remedies for Covid-19 and false claims fact-checked
- Fact Check Old man in viral social media posts is a US WWII veteran, not a Covid-recovered Italian
- Fact Check Nepal village photo used in the context of Indian cricket misleads many
In Public InterestRead this before opting for alternative remedies for Covid-19 The effects of reckless consumption of herbs may not be seen immediately, but it can cause harm in t... Read More
- Scientists worldwide in desperate search for COVID-19 drug
- Six things to know for cannabis legalization in Nepal
- Women ministers in Nepal
- Brace yourself for toxic winter air
- Nepal has no technology to test alleged use of oxytocin in fruits and vegetables