Thursday, April 15, 2021
Thursday, April 15, 2021
HomeEnglishSharing Coronavirus Messages in a Group is now a Punishable Offence? No,...

Sharing Coronavirus Messages in a Group is now a Punishable Offence? No, Fake Message goes viral

Claim: Sharing information related to the coronavirus is now a punishable offense. 

The message reads “All honorable members of the group are informed that sharing any post related to Coronavirus has been declared a punishable offense by the Central Government. Only a Government agency can post on Corona. In case of wrong post or message, action will be taken against the members of the entire group including the group administrator by registering a lawsuit under the IT Act, so keep in mind and be safe: Ravi Nayak, Principal Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India”

Verification:

Amid panic over the novel Coronavirus, rumor-mongering messages, videos and graphics are doing the rounds on various social media platforms. A WhatsApp forward, attributed to an official named Ravi Nayak in the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), is doing rounds on the social media which claims that sharing Coronavirus messages has been declared as a punishable offense by the central government and in case of the wrong post, action will be taken against the members and the group administrator under the IT Act.

We found that several users shared the viral message on their respective handles. The claim was also sent by several readers to Newschecker’s WhatsApp helpline number for verification.

Fact Check:

As we began fact-checking the claim, we looked for any orders passed by the Ministry of Home Affairs on their official website. However, we did not find any information to corroborate the same.

While checking the Home Ministry’s official website, we found that there is no official named Ravi Nayak in MHA as claimed in the viral message.

While searching the reality of the viral message, we came across the government’s Press Information Bureau (PIB). PIB Fact Check, the official Twitter handle of the Press Information Bureau department that counters misinformation on government policies, denied the viral message and said, “Ministry of Home Affairs has given no such instructions. There is misinformation being spread on social media.”

PIB Fact Check also urged social media users to seek authentic information from its site and that of the Health Ministry.

Conclusion:

It is evident from our fact check that the message viral on social media claiming to be from the Ministry of Home affairs is false.

 

Result: False

 

Sources

 

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(If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044. You can also visit the Contact Us page and fill the form)

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Shaminder Singh
Shaminder started off his career as a freelance journalist for a consulting and research firm. He has been a Political Strategist and Media Manager. Before joining Newschecker, he worked with various reputed media agencies like Daily Post India, PTC News.

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