Video showing Kidney Hill ‘witch’ is actually VFX artist Joseph Njovu’s work

TV channels aired the clip as real footage in their news bulletins


Claim: A “witch” was filmed hovering in Kidney Hill Park in Karachi, Pakistan and strange noises heard by park officials in the dead of night. The person who shot the video was down with a 104°F fever.

Fact: The video clip is, in fact, the work of Zambian visual effects artist and filmmaker Joseph Njovu, who has uploaded the process as a “VFX tutorial” on his YouTube channel. City Wardens stationed at Kidney Hill Park have categorically denied any such ghost-spotting.

On 22 October 2022, Soch Fact Check received via WhatsApp a video and three images of a television screen displaying news cards in a K21 News’ bulletin. The tickers read as follows:

  • “کراچی کے کڈنی ہل پارک میں خوف کے سائے [Fear looms over Karachi’s Kidney Hill Park]”
  • “ویڈیو بنانے والا سٹی وارڈن مناظر دیکھ کر خوفزدہ [City Warden who made the video scared by the scenes]”
  • “کے ایم سی کا سٹی وارڈن کو ایک سو چار بخار ہوگیا [KMC City Warden down with 104°F fever]”

The video shows a floating unidentified creature with raggedy hair and glowing eyes, wearing a loose gown. Some people are claiming the video shows a “churail” — the Urdu word for witch.

Kidney Hill Park is located in Karachi’s East district and was inaugurated by Barrister Murtaza Wahab, a leader of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and then the city’s administrator, on 21 December 2019 following the Supreme Court’s order to demolish the illegal constructions on the park’s land. The recreational area is famous for similar supernatural tales among locals.

Karachi City Wardens Director Raja Rustam commented via phone during the K21 News bulletin, in which he said a warden had seen the creature in the video at 12:30am in the washroom at the park, after which he felt very unwell for two days. Rustam also stated that these kinds of sightings often take place at the park at night.

Fact or Fiction?

Using Google Lens — which turned up the search phrase “real witch caught on camera in ghana” — and reverse image search tools, Soch Fact Check found that this video has been shared in other countries on TikTok.

We found that the video originated from the YouTube channel of Zambian visual effects artist Joseph Njovu.

According to his 19-minute-long YouTube video, in which he shows the process through which he created the “witch,” Joseph Njovu used two applications to create the clip Cinema 4D and Adobe After Effects.

Njovu told Soch Fact Check, “I shot it on my phone, recorded the voices with my wife that [were] meant to be the witches, and I did the editing,” Njovu said, adding that he made it about two months ago.

“In the VFX industry, there is a lot of videos that are made to appear as real when actually they are CGI [Computer-Generated Imagery]/VFX, e.g, UFOs [Unidentified Flying Objects] caught on camera, trick shots where people pretend to do complicated trick shots either by throwing a ball and have it bounce on different places so as to land on a certain spot.

“Videos like supernatural/ghosts and mysterious stuff caught on camera, 90 percent of those from YouTube are made with VFX by different artists.”

The VFX artist explained that he made the video because it is what he does for a living but stressed that “every time I make something, I don’t take long to show people behind the scenes or a breakdown of how I made it”.

The clip claiming to show the Kidney Hill witch “first went viral in Nigeria,” Njovu stated. “Then I started hearing it went viral in Indonesia, the false information may have come from there because when a certain video goes viral, people tend to twist the stories and want to make money or news out of something.”

In the comments on his YouTube channel, various people mentioned how the clip has been going viral in different countries, including in Indonesia, India, and Nigeria.

Soch Fact Check also visited Kidney Hill Park on Tuesday morning and spoke to Shahid, a City Warden in-charge of Shift ‘A’ at the park. Shahid — who talked to us with his supervisor’s permission — said the video was “from some other country” and that it was easily searchable on the internet. He added that the quote about 104°F fever was “based on a misunderstanding”.

Soch Fact Check also reached out Karachi City Wardens Director Raja Rustam, who had confirmed that the incident occurred in his comment to K21 News.

Rustam later completely denied his original comment, telling Soch Fact Check he was driving when he got a call from the news channel and that he “hadn’t seen the video” and “didn’t say the video was authentic. […] I didn’t mention any video in that beeper.”.

“But my actual answer would be — and I said that at that time — there was an old Bazarekar graveyard inside and it was entirely a jungle at one point in time when we had it cleared [as part of the Supreme Court’s order of demolition], you see it for yourself,” he said.

“It’s dead silent at night because we close it at night after Maghrib. I went there a few times at night and the wardens said it felt like things became heavy, the atmosphere became cold, etc., you know how humans think. These are Allah’s creations and they live at such deserted places at night, so maybe they felt it. […] Since I hadn’t watched the video, I couldn’t have commented on the video. They told me the workers fell sick at night, so I said one often gets chills at night.”

When asked how he could comment on the claim that the warden was down with 104°F fever, he replied, “No, I didn’t say he got a fever. It was them [the TV channel] who said some warden was down with a 104°F fever. I said it had happened a couple of times that the warden got chills, not fever, and they felt disheartened, scared.”

Rustam also denied any linkages between the City Warden and the viral video. He said, “We have nothing to do with the video because we hadn’t released it. This video was not made viral by our employee, it was someone from the Park Department.”


Soch Fact Check conducted a CrowdTangle analysis for the seven-day period from 18 October 2022 to 25 October using the following search terms:

  • “کراچی کڈنی ہل پارک”
  • “Kidney Hill Park Karachi”

The first search term turned up 11 posts on Facebook that gained 1,582 interactions, while the second search term yielded 2,264 interactions across 28 Facebook posts.

The clip also appeared on numerous Facebook pages, such as Dulha & Dulhan, Zabar News, Journalist Muhammad Saeed Khan, K21 News, Danish Rafiq, گلفام مہاجر گلفام, Syed Asghar Ajaz, Sajjad Hussain, and Salute To Pakistan. Facebook user Arsalan Sharif posted a YouTube link containing the video in various groups, including here, here, here, here, and here. Another YouTube link was shared in this group.

On YouTube, the clip was shared on channels such as K21 News, Khurram Fahad, Pak News (which claims that sources informed them that the warden was admitted to the hospital), Farsha Voice (which claims the warden was allowed to be discharged after three days and that other stationed wardens say monsters patrol after 12 AM midnight), Adeel Vlogs (which claims the incident occurred at two locations at least, namely Liaquatabad and Madeeha Stop in Gulshan-e-Ghazi), Zabar News (which claims the wardens have refused to work at the site), Bilal Hasnain Vlog (which claims such incidents started happening after houses and mosque demolished), and London-based blogger Faisal Ali, who claims the incident occurred in Razzakabad in Karachi’s Bin Qasim Town.

The video was posted by a verified Instagram account, @instablog9ja.

The clip was also shared as YouTube Shorts by How Making, fun life😘🎉, Status World❤️❤️💯, Qazi ki updates, Nsi News Pakistan, hansi mazaq chalta hai ganjee, BMW, and Hussain vlogger.

Colombian news outlet Kienyke also published a report with the claim, “A user from Amagá, Antioquia, recorded on video how a witch flew to his residence,” and shared it on its verified Facebook and Twitter accounts here, here, here, and here, verified Instagram account here, and YouTube channel here.

On Twitter, the video was shared here and was viewed more than 101,000 times.

Conclusion: Zambian visual effects artist and filmmaker Joseph Njovu’s work has wrongly been shared as a witch spotted in Karachi’s Kidney Hill Park. Njovu has explained on his YouTube channel how he made the viral video. The clip has no basis in truth; furthermore, City Wardens stationed at Kidney Hill Park have categorically denied any such ghost-spotting.

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