The photo has circulated online since 2013 in reports about members of the RSS helping flood victims in Uttarakhand
Multiple Facebook posts share a photograph they claim shows members of the Hindu nationalist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh group carrying food and medicine to the survivors of a deadly flash flood in a remote Indian Himalayan valley on February 7, 2021. The claim is false: the photo has actually circulated online since 2013 and has nothing to do with the glacier disaster in Uttarakhand, which killed 60 people and left 150 others missing.
The photo was published here in a Facebook post on February 12, 2021.
The post’s caption in Hindi translates to English as: “Thirteen villages in Chamoli’s Tapovan region have been reduced to ruins. There are no roads left, bridges have been washed away. Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s workers are leading from the front, carrying sacks of grain on their shoulders so that no one has to go to sleep hungry or die of disease. We are grateful.”
The caption refers to the devastation caused by a flash flood in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand on February 7, 2021, as AFP reported here.
A deadly flood -- apparently triggered by a glacial burst -- smashed through two mountain dam projects, leaving scores missing, destroying bridges and roads, hitting two hydroelectric power plants and killing 60, the AFP report says.
The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is right-wing Hindu nationalist organisation.
The photo was also shared here, here, here and here on Facebook; here, here and here on Twitter alongside identical claims.
However, the claim is false.
A reverse image search on Google found the same photo published here in a report about the RSS’s relief works in flood-hit areas of Uttarakhand on July 1, 2013.
“Day-12: RSS Relief Works at Uttarakhand – A Report in Brief; Needs more helping hands,” reads the headline.
Below is a image comparison screenshot of the photo published in the misleading Facebook post (L) and the photo published in the 2013 report:
The report and photo were also published on a blog on the same day.
The RSS’s relief work was highlighted in a statement published on their website on June 19, and their efforts were reported here a week later by The Hindu on June 26, 2013.