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Does this viral video actually show a crocodile in Karachi?

A video of a crocodile in a flooded street has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on Facebook alongside a claim that it was taken in Karachi, as the city continues to see widespread flooding after heavy rains.

The claim, however, is false; this video has circulated online since 2019 and actually shows a street in India.

The video was published here on Facebook on August 26, 2020. It has been viewed more than 748,000 times and shared some 28,000 times.

تیز بارش کے بعد منگھوپیر کے مگرمچھ باہرنکل آئے لوگ وہاں کے احتیاط کریں ان مگرمچھ سے لازمی شیئر کریں

Posted by ‎Karachi Future کراچی والے‎ on Tuesday, August 25, 2020

The 30-second clip shows a crocodile being pulled by a rope on a flooded street. Bystanders can be heard screaming as they watch.

 

The video’s Urdu caption translates to English as: “After heavy rain, the crocodiles of Manghopir are out. Beware the crocodiles. Share this post.”

Heavy rain lashed Karachi this month, causing widespread flooding that killed dozens and left many homeless.

A reverse image search on Google using video keyframes found a video of the same scene shot from a different angle, published here on the YouTube channel of Indian newspaper Times of India on August 4, 2019.

The video description states: “Due to waterlogging by the ongoing heavy rains, further incidents of crocodiles entering Vadodara’s housing complexes have been recorded. Following last week’s viral video of a crocodile attacking a dog inside Lalbaug’s Rajsthamb society, a team of rescuers captured another reptile at night from the entrance of a house. Meanwhile, a 10-foot-long crocodile gave a hard time to forest officials at a society in Vadsar. As the water levels rise in the Lalbaug lake, crocodiles come out and enter the housing societies adjacent to it.”

Vadodara is a city in the Indian state of Gujarat.

Below is a screenshot comparison of the Time of India video (L) and the video in the misleading Facebook post (R), with identical features circled in blue, red and green by AFP:

 

The state-run Sindh Wildlife Department in Karachi also denied the claims in this August 24, 2020 tweet.

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