No, Shehbaz Sharif did not cry over recent increase in petrol prices
Photo originally from when Shehbaz Sharif watched a video on Pakistan’s martyrs
Claim: Shehbaz Sharif cried over the pain people are experiencing due to increasing inflation after increasing the petrol prices by PKR 19.95.
Fact: The photo is authentic but presented misleadingly; Sharif’s party, the PML-N, posted it in May 2023, with the caption that he cried while watching a video of Pakistan Army martyrs during an event where he also met the martyrs’ families.
“پٹرولیم مصنوعات میں 19.95 کااضافہ کرنے کے بعد بڑھتی مہنگائی اور عوام کے درد میں وزیراعظم پاکستان شہباز شریف کے آنسو نکل آئے ۔ مثبت رپورٹنگ
[After increasing the petrol prices by PKR 19.95, Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif cried over the pain people are experiencing due to increasing inflation. Positive reporting!]”
The move is expected to pump up inflation, which rose to 28.3% in July, year-on-year (YoY), Reuters reported (archive), citing the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). “In June, the CPI rise was 29.4% year-on-year, coming off a record 38% in May,” the publication said.
Fact or Fiction?
Soch Fact Check ran a reverse-image search and found the claim to be untrue. Google Lens led us to a 24 May 2023 Reddit post (archive) — titled “PML-N: Grief knows no boundaries” — by user BlandBiryani in the r/pakistan thread.
The picture can be found online as early as 24 May 2023 by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) — Sharif’s party, of which he is the president — on its social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. The respective archived links are available here, here, and here.
The PML-N captioned the picture as follows:
“Grief knows no boundaries.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif could not hold his tears as he met the courageous heirs of our fallen heroes. Pakistan is blessed to have a PM who feels the pain of the nation. 💚🇵🇰#عظمتِ_شہدا_کنونشن”
The post by Facebook user Hamid Latif Jarral has received close to 60 comments and was shared over a dozen times.
Facebook’s fact-checking tool notes that the post has been viewed more than 5.8 million times over the past 24 hours.
Conclusion: The photo shows Sharif crying while watching a video of the Pakistan Army martyrs during an event where he also met the martyrs’ families. It is authentic but presented in a misleading context.
Background image in cover photo: @ShehbazSharif
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