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Fact-check: Old man criticising PPP and one beaten up are not same

KARACHI: Politicians and social media users claim that an old man was bludgeoned in Sindh after he criticised the senior leadership of PPP. According to media reports, the claim is incorrect.

According to Geo News report, on September 23, Pakistani Facebook and Twitter users, as well as politicians from the opposition political party, shared two videos.

One showed a flood survivor speaking to a local channel, in which he holds the PPP responsible for bad governance and mismanagement. He then raises slogans in support of former prime minister Imran Khan.

The other video shows an old man being brutally beaten with a stick by men abusing him Kanwal Shauzab, the former member of the national assembly, shared the videos with a caption that since the flood victim made the “mistake” of raising his voice against the “14-year-rule” of the PPP in Sindh he was punished for it.

The video, posted by her, has received over 336,000 views to date. In response to Shauzab, another member of her party, Shireen Mazari, who was the former human rights minister, wrote: “The old man criticised Bilawal and was punished for it. Shameful and condemnable. Dynastic mafia politics.”

Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari is the chairman of the PPP and the foreign minister of Pakistan. The video further made it to video blogs posted by several television anchors, who also accused the Sindh government of torturing an old man complaining about PPP’s rule.

The flood survivor seen in the first video is Allah Jurio Lashari. He is a 71-year-old farmer in the Naushahro Feroze district of Sindh.

Earlier this month, Lashari gave an interview to Sindh Television News, where he criticised the PPP government for bad governance in the province.

The Fact Check reached out to the reporter, Bachal Hingoro, who recorded the interview.

He confirmed that he spoke to Lashari while covering a protest by flood survivors in the district. The Fact Check then reached out to Lashari who said he did record an interview with Sindh Television News but he was not the man in the second video.

“No one has beaten me,” he told Geo Fact Check, over the phone, “And no one forced me to say this.”Lashari added that he is an old supporter of the PPP and had protested against military dictator General Zia ul Haq. “My home has drowned [in the floods],” the 71-year-old added, “My village has been destroyed. We are raising our voices but no minister has come to see us.”

It is unclear where the second video of a man, who is being attacked, has been recorded or who the man in the video is.

However, Geo Fact Check was able to ascertain that the two men in the videos were not the same.

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