New Delhi: With the Russian invasion triggering a painful refugee crisis in Ukraine, social media has been overflowing with pictures and videos of humanitarian gestures being extended in the midst of destruction.
A photo of a food truck named ‘Guru Nanak’s Langar, Goodbye Hunger’ has also been making rounds online claiming that the Sikh community have come forward to serve free food to Ukrainians.
Several Twitter users, including verified accounts, applauded their “selfless service” for the “good of humanity”.
Saluting #Sikhs at forefront in #Ukraine serving #langar free food, to fellow Ukrainians, selfless service in name of God for good of humanity, enshrined upon us by Guru Nanak Devji. Proud to be a Sikh @Khalsa_Aid @thesikhstriumph @SkyNews @downingstreet @EU_Commission @BBCWorld pic.twitter.com/k0DQpA02Ha
— Ranjit Baxi (@RanjitBaxi) February 26, 2022
— Rᴇʟɪɢɪᴏɴ Wᴏʀʟᴅ (@religionworldIN) February 27, 2022
Founder of PARI Yogita Bhayana had also shared the picture of “Guru’s langar in Ukraine”, while actress Richa Chaddha wrote how there was “so much to learn” from the Sikhs. Her post was retweeted over 1,300 times.
So much to learn … https://t.co/bKmpun3iF5
— RichaChadha (@RichaChadha) February 26, 2022
— Yogita Bhayana योगिता भयाना (@yogitabhayana) February 26, 2022
Hindi language newspaper Dainik Bhaskar had also tweeted appreciating the spirit of the ‘langar’. They later deleted the post.
सेवा के जज्बे को सलाम:सिखों ने यूक्रेन युद्ध स्थली पर लोगों को भुखमरी से बचाने के लिए लगाए लंगर, ट्रेनों में भी बांट रहे खानाhttps://t.co/jE6NmQ4OtP#ukraine #RussiaUkraineWar #Sikhs #Langar pic.twitter.com/x3pBQ4rem1
— Dainik Bhaskar (@DainikBhaskar) February 27, 2022
The photo had not only gone viral on Twitter, but was also widely shared on Facebook and had reached Instagram as well.
Contrary to the claims, the photo is an old image of Canada’s first free food truck operated by the Sikhs. News outlets first reported about it in 2016.
Twitter account @WeTheSikhs had posted the same image as far back in 2018, highlighting how everybody was welcomed at Canada’s first free food truck “regardless of faith, gender, age, caste or status”.
Canada’s first Free Food Truck – Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s LANGAR – Goodbye Hunger. Everybody is welcome here regardless of Faith, Gender, Age, Caste or Status.#WeTheSikhs #Langar #GuruNanakDevJi #proudtobesikh pic.twitter.com/9chKbUAy19
— WeTheSikhs (@WeTheSikhs) August 6, 2018
Twitter users were quick to rectify the factual errors surrounding the viral image, pointing out how it was from Canada and not Ukraine. However, they asserted that the clarification, in no way, diminished the “commendable efforts” of the Sikh community.
This is Canada 2018 and not Ukraine. However what Sikh Community is doing in Ukraine is Commendable(Always ready to help). Langar pratha started by Guru Nanak Dev Ji.Nanak Naam Chardi Kala, Tere Bhane Sarbat da Bhala.🙏🙏🙏🙏.
— Rajneet Singh Sethi (@RajneetSethi) February 26, 2022
Though there were some sarcastic tweets targeted at those who call out “graduates from WhatApp University” for amplifying false information themselves.
And they call us graduates from WhatsApp University
— INFERNO (@TheAngryLord) February 26, 2022
One user offered a word of caution that one should always be mindful of what they’re putting on social media.
Kya baat hai Behen Jees … Guru Nanak Langar wale, ek hi food truck ko lekar pura world tour karte hai !!
Kabhi Kannedda, kabhi UK , kabhi #Ukraine .
Download #GoogleChrome & search , before putting anything on social media.
— Rinju Chandel (@r_rinju) February 27, 2022
(In collaboration with SM Hoaxslayer)