Fact check: Old, clipped video of Kanhaiya Kumar shared as him asking people to embrace Islam

This story was originally published by Factly, and republished by Lighthouse Journalism as a part of the Shakti Collective

Clipped video of Kanhaiya Kumar
Screenshot of video being shared with the claim that Kanhaiya Kumar asked people to embrace Islam. (PC: FB)

A video featuring Kanhaiya Kumar saying, “We have a strong bond with this place. We didn’t come here from Arabia; we grew up here. People embraced this religion because it promotes peace and equality, unlike older faiths with untouchability. Mosques don’t follow social hierarchies. That’s why we’ve chosen to follow this religion and won’t change” is circulating on social media platforms with the claim that he urged people to convert to Islam.


Facebook user Ghanshyam Sureka shared the viral video on his profile.

Check the archive version of the post here.

Other users too are sharing the video with same claim.


On performing a relevant keyword search regarding the viral claim, we found the original video posted by ‘One Channel’ on its YouTube channel. This video dates to 27 August 2018 when Kumar answered the questions of intellectuals of the Muslim community in Nanded. Observing the full video, we found that the original video was trimmed at different timestamps and shared as a viral video.

At the 11:50 timestamp, Kanhaiya can be heard making the statements in the viral video. Here, he is not discussing Islam as his personal belief but rather paraphrasing Maulana Abul Kalam Azad’s words. He stated that “at the Jama Masjid, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, India’s first education minister, declared that this nation belongs to all of us. We won’t leave just because someone tells us to. Our blood and sweat have mingled with this nation’s soil. Our history is linked with India. Not all of us came from the Arab world; many were born and raised here. People left their old faiths due to untouchability and embraced Islam for its message of peace and equality. Mosques don’t discriminate. That’s why we chose Islam and won’t abandon it. This is when Indian Muslims decided to remain in India.”

At 15:03, Kanhaiya discusses politicians who portray themselves as saviours of the Muslim community. In this context, he advises Muslims to reject such leaders and encourages them to demand that they prioritize education and employment issues. He points out, “If someone presents themselves as the saviour of your community, claiming they will safeguard your religion, respond by affirming that Allah is mighty and will safeguard us. We don’t need someone who will save our religion. We need someone who can talk about education for us, about employment, about healthy lifestyle.”

Three Segments from timestamps 11:50 to 12:25, 16:02 to 16:07, and 15:12 to 15:16 respectively were trimmed, combined, and circulated as a viral video.

Conclusion: An old and clipped video of Kanhaiya Kumar is shared as he asked people to embrace Islam. Viral claim is fake.

(This story was originally published by Factly, and republished by Lighthouse Journalism as a part of the Shakti Collective)