YouTube is a barometer of popularity in terms of number of likes and subscribers, but for some it’s a means of ending controversy. Amid recent news of an Israeli reporter entering Mecca, a Telugu YouTuber has claimed that he too entered Mecca’s mosques, sparking an online backlash.
Ravi Prabhu from Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh posted a video of entering the holy city of Mecca on his YouTube channel. He also uploaded pictures of his visit to Makkah Masjid on social media.
In a YouTube Live video, he said that even though he was a non-Muslim, he managed to enter Mecca, claiming that no one else had achieved such a feat.
Drawing the ire of Muslim communities, members of the Hyderabad Muslim Society South India told News18 that they have demanded a public apology from Prabhu, and that he should announce on YouTube that he had hurt the sentiments of Muslims. Failure to do so will demand strict action against him, the community officials have warned.
This is not the first time that Prabhu’s YouTube videos have been criticized and created controversy. Earlier, he had held a press conference and claimed to be the first Telugu man to visit 186 countries but his claim failed after many of his colleagues on YouTube contested him. They even accused him of being a “fake traveller”.
Earlier, Prabhu had commented in support of Pakistan. He posted #PakistanZindabad on his personal Facebook profile during India-Pakistan cricket matches.
Prabhu has not yet responded to the allegations leveled against him. When contacted by News18 on the current controversy, he said he did not want to comment.
Last month, an Israeli journalist, Channel 13’s Gul Tamari, posted a video on Twitter of him breaking into Mecca, defying the ban on non-Muslims.
Makkah regional police have handed over a citizen to prosecutors for his alleged involvement in “facilitating the transfer and entry of (a non-Muslim) journalist,” a police spokesman said in comments carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.
(with agency inputs)
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