Video does not show the Pongal celebration at the Prime Minister’s office in the UK

International Misleading

The viral video is from the Pongal feast held by the Waterloo-based Tamil Cultural Association in Canada.

Pongal is a harvest festival celebrated by Tamil community in India and Sri Lanka. It is also referred to as Thai Pongal. On the occasion of Pongal, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in a video message said, “I want to send my best wishes to everyone celebrating Thai Pongal this weekend. I know how much this festival means to families across the country. Let me wish everyone here and around the world health, happiness and prosperity this Thai Pongal.”

In this backdrop a video that has been doing the rounds of the internet features a group of men enjoying a Pongal feast on banana leaves in a traditional way. The caption of the video states “UK PM office & defence celebrating Pongal festival. Eating sadya on banana leaf”.

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Several news outlets including The Indian Express, have published reports about a staff lunch organised by UK PM Rishi Sunak on the occasion of Pongal on January 15, 2023.

This video is also being circulated on Facebook with same caption 

Fact Check-

We started our investigation by running a keyword search on Google, but we could not find any reliable reports of such a celebration at PM s office at UK.

In further search we found the same video uploaded on the Tamil Culture Waterloo Region’s facebook page. It says the feast took place in Waterloo, Canada, not the UK. The post also mentioned that the event was attended by the Regional Chair City Mayors, councillors, Police Chief and staff.

We also found a tweet by the Mayor of Kitchener city, Berry Vrbanovic, who had shared some pictures of the event. Kitchener and Waterloo are considered twin cities in Ontario, Canada. One of Vrbanovic’s tweets also contains a picture of him from the feast.

Conclusion- 

Fact Crescendo found the claim made along with the viral video to be Misleading. The video does not show the Pongal celebration at the Prime Minister’s office in the United Kingdom. The viral video is from the Pongal feast held by the Waterloo-based Tamil Cultural Association in Canada.

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Title:Video does not show the Pongal celebration at the Prime Minister’s office in the UK

Fact Check By: Usha Manoj 

Result: Misleading


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