Photo of an Indian athlete winning at a championship in Hungary is falsely linked to the Tokyo Olympics

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A photo of an Indian athlete has been shared on Facebook and Twitter — including by Indian celebrities — in posts that claim she won a gold medal at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics. However, the claim is false. The athlete in the image, Priya Malik, actually won a gold medal at the recently concluded Cadet World Wrestling Championships in Hungary in July 2021.

The photo was shared on Facebook here on July 25, 2021.

The Tamil-language caption translates to English as: “Gold medal hunt has just begun, the first gold medal has been won by Priya Malik #tokyo #olympics.”

Screenshot of the misleading post, taken on July 29, 2021

Tokyo 2020 kicked off on July 23, 2021, after the pandemic forced organisers to postpone the Olympic Games by a year.

It is the first Olympics to see athletes compete in front of largely empty stadiums after the city announced a Covid-19 state of emergency.

The image was shared hundreds of times after it was tweeted with a similar claim by Indian celebrities here and here.

The claim, however, is false.

A search on Google found the original photo published here on July 22, 2021, on the official website of United World Wrestling (UWW).

“Priya MALIK (IND) won the 73kg world title in Budapest,” reads the photo caption.

Below is a screenshot of the photo on UWW's website:

Screenshot of the photo on UWW's website

The Cadet World Wrestling Championships were held in Budapest, the Hungarian capital, from July 19 to 25, 2021.

Indian wrestler Priya Malik defeated her opponent from Belarus in the finals of the 73-kg weight category clinching the gold medal.

Below is a screenshot comparison between the photo in the misleading post (L) and the genuine photo on UWW's website (R)

Screenshot comparison between the photo in the misleading post (L) and the genuine photo on UWW's website (R)

Footage of her match was also uploaded on UWW's website, as well as on its official YouTube channel on July 23, 2021.

India’s Department of Sports congratulated Malik by posting a tweet on their official Twitter account on July 25, 2021.

The tweet says: “#wrestling | Priya Malik becomes world cadet champion in 73kg event defeating her Belarusian counterpart by 5-0. Clinches #Gold for India. Well done champ ! Congratulations #WorldCadetWrestlingChampionsip #Hungary #IndiaOnTheRise.”

So far, India has only won a silver medal at the 2020 Olympics, according to the Tokyo Olympics' latest medal tally updated on July 29, 2021.

Weightlifter Chanu Saikhom Mirabai won the silver medal in the 49-kg women’s category.

TOKYO OLYMPICS