The land dispute case was falsely reported and shared as a religious conversion case by OpIndia.

Claim

Darbhanga: A lone Hindu family in a Muslim-majority village was harassed, forced to convert, and had objectionable items thrown in their house by Mohammad Guddu and Mohammad Laddu.

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Explanation

A news report by OpIndia and Hindu Post dated February 5, 2024 reported that in Darbhanga, Bihar, the only Hindu family in a mostly Muslim village is facing pressure to get converted to Islam. It is claimed that “They’ve been physically assaulted, and offensive objects have been thrown at them. The accusations are against Muhammad Guddu and his five brothers, including Muhammad Laddu.

This incident is happening in Darbhanga’s Muria village, and Rajdhan Devi and her family are the victims. The issue came to light when her son Vicky approached District Magistrate Rajeev Roshan with their plea for help. The victim states in the plea that their entire village is involved in the problem.

The victim’s family alleged that they had been taking rounds of government offices and police stations for the past 3 years. After that, the letter received by Sadar sub-divisional officers directed them to immediately go to the place and take action.”

The same viral news was shared by right-wing followers on X (formerly Twitter) and can be seen here and here.

What is the Truth?

We found a press release from Darbhanga Police official X handle. In the press release from the senior superintendent of police in Darbhanga, it is mentioned that news from Muria Village of Bhalpatti police station is a rumour, not about religious conversion, but about a land dispute.

The Sub-Divisonal Police Officer, Sadar, mentioned that this issue isn’t about religious matters but a dispute over land. As per the investigation, there is a long vacant government land between the two parties, over which a dispute has taken place.

Rajdhan Devi and her son Vicky Kumar wants to open doors and windows on the north side where there is government land. However, the neighbour is objecting to open the doors and windows.

The vacant government land between them, measured by officials, suggested it should be a road without violating rules. During the investigation, women and villagers were present, but no signs of religious disputes or bullying were found.

The full video of the Vikas Kumar SDO Sadar press release was posted on News Bihar Today.

It was also reported by Aaj Tak on February 4, in an article titled “The truth of the Darbhanga religious conversion case came out; it turned out to be a land-window dispute.”.

Conclusion

A video of  land dispute case was falsely reported by right-wing media outlets as a religious conversion.

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