By: Soumadip Dey
Claim: Pictures of a cow and a leopard sitting together have been shared on social media with a claim that the images were clicked recently by a person named Dr. Gaikwad near Sangamner.
Source: WhatsApp and Facebook.
What Happened: A set of pictures of a leopard and cow sitting together have been circulated on various WhatsApp groups with the claim that they have been taken by a certain Dr. Gaikwad at a village called Ashwi, which is somewhere near Sangamner.
The images have been shared with the following caption in Marathi: ‘काल रात्रीचे,आश्वी येथील डॉ गायकवाड यांच्या घरासमोर….त्यांनीच काढलेले फोटो
This translates to: ‘Last night, in front of Dr. Gaikwad’s house in Ashwari. These wonderful moments took place in Ashwi near Sangamner. The cow is leaning on the leopard to save it from winter.’
The posts claims the image is a recent one and was taken near Sangamner, which is a city in the Ahmednagar District of Maharashtra
The image and narrative has also been circulated on Facebook, with a large number of people sharing it independently through their personal pages.
Since the images and narrative have been shared by people individually, it suggests that they are being circulated through various WhatsApp groups.
Facts: The images are far from recent and were not clicked in Maharashtra. The pictures can be traced as far back as 2014, when the images and the actual narrative were first published online. However, the author himself stated that the incident took place in 2004, and the location mentioned then is the Vadodara district in Gujarat.
The images shared on social media along with other images from the same incident were also published along with the article. The author has also narrated the incident with other details, including the location of the village.
Conclusion: This is yet another instance where old images were reshared on social media in an attempt to garner likes and shares. However, compared to the other viral hoaxes and disinformation making the rounds on WhatsApp, this is relatively harmless, seeking simply to spread a message of positivity.