This photo of a damaged mosque dome is from Uttar Pradesh, not Delhi's Jama Masjid

·2 min read

Facebook and Twitter posts circulating in India share a photo that they claim shows the aftermath of a storm that damaged the giant Jama Masjid mosque in New Delhi in May 2022. However, the photo shows a mosque with the same name in Uttar Pradesh which collapsed in 2017.

"The 300 kg dome and urn of Jama Masjid falling in the storm yesterday is no coincidence," reads a Hindi-language Facebook post from May 31.

"This is a clear sign of God Shiva," it adds, referring to the Hindu deity.

The 17th-century Jama Masjid mosque in New Delhi is one of India's largest houses of worship.

The 300-kilogram (660-pound) finial from the mosque's main dome crashed to the ground in a storm on May 30, with two people injured by falling stones, The Economic Times newspaper reported.

A screenshot of the misleading Facebook post captured on June 7, 2022

The photo was shared in similar posts in India, including here and here on Facebook and here and here on Twitter.

However, the claim is misleading.

Wrong mosque

A reverse image search and keyword search on Google found the photo in an article about the deadly collapse of a mosque called Jama Masjid in Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh in October 2017.

Hindi-language newspaper Patrika reported that the wall and dome of the mosque caved in during prayers, leaving worshippers to be rescued from the rubble.

A 10-year-old boy was killed in the disaster, it said.

The same mosque can be seen in a video report from October 24, 2017 by Hindi news channel News 18.

The report says that the minaret and dome of the mosque collapsed, with local residents blaming water from the drains that had accumulated in the wall of the mosque and weakened it.

Below is a screenshot comparison of the photo in the misleading post (left) and the photo published in Patrika report in 2017 (right).

A comparison of the photo in the misleading post (Left) and the photo published in Patrika (R)

Various local media outlets reported on the incident in 2017, including here and here.

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