Old video shows family tragedy at waterfall in India, not Pakistan floods in 2022

·2 min read

Following devastating monsoon floods that have put nearly a third of Pakistan under water, a video has been viewed tens of thousands of times in Twitter posts that claim it shows a family drowning in the country's northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. The video, however, has been shared in a false context. It shows an accident at a waterfall in India in 2011.

Warning: distressing footage

The 30-second clip shows five people clinging to a rock next to a waterfall before being suddenly swept away.

It has been viewed more than 52,000 times after being shared on Twitter here on August 26.

"Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the flood came and drowned the whole family," the tweet's Urdu-language caption reads.

Screenshot of the false post. Taken on September 6, 2022.

Pakistan has suffered months of record monsoon rains that have killed at least 1,300 people and washed away homes, businesses, roads and bridges, AFP reported.

The same video was viewed more than 20,000 times alongside a similar claim on Twitter here, here and here.

In fact, the video shows an accident in India in 2011.

India tragedy

A reverse image and subsequent keyword search found it corresponds to a longer clip published on the YouTube channel for New Delhi-based production company Wild Films India on July 21, 2011.

The scenes in the false posts correspond to the 41-second mark of the original video.

"This tragic accident happened at the Patalpani waterfall in Indore, when a father and his 4 kids celebrated the MBA graduation of the oldest daughter and got surprised by the freak flood," the description reads.

"Fortunately, there were also survivors in the group, despite the fall from a great height," it adds.

Below is a screenshot of the video the false posts (left) and the YouTube video (right):

Screenshot comparison.

 

The location in the video corresponds with photos tagged here on Google Maps at Patalpani Waterfalls in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

A spokesperson for Wild Films India told AFP: "This footage was shot at the Patalpani Waterfalls near Indore in Madhya Pradesh.

"Wild Films India owns the rights to the said clip, as we acquired the copyright from the shooter. So this footage is certainly not from Pakistan or from this decade even."

A keyword search using details indicated in the YouTube video's description found this report by Press Trust of India (PTI) published on July 18, 2011.

According to the report, five family members were bathing near the waterfall when the tragedy unfolded.

"While two of them swam to safety, the other three drowned, PS Maravi, in-charge Bargauda police station told PTI," the report reads.

Other Indian media reports published at the time also contained scenes from the video, including here and here.

Pakistan's monsoon season -- which typically lasts from June to September -- has sparked other misleading claims debunked by AFP here, here and here.