Kolkata Police has cracked the whip on fake news being circulated surrounding the Covid-19 alert and subsequent lockdown in India. A lady named Pallavi Shivani was arrested on Monday for circulating fake information on a whatsapp group saying that there were 15 Covid-19 cases in New Alipore area and that the government was trying ti supress facts.
The message reads, “New Alipore area has become hot spot for corona. 15 cases have been in block P and 2 in my lane. Please be careful everyone.” However, till date there are no such cases that have been officially reported from the areas mentioned in her message.
The Police received information on Sunday morning and tried to trace the lady on basis of the information on the whatsapp group. The message was sent on a whatsapp group called ‘Smart Juniors’ and her name reflected as ‘Pallavi Kangaroo kids’. Incidentally Kangaoo Kids is a Montessori school in New Alipore area and Police found out that the school is closed for quite sometime now after the corona virus alert and that there is no staff by the name Pallavi in the school.
The Police then traced back the lady to Behala area. The lady has no valid reasons to support her claims when questioned by the Police. The accused has been charged under section 505(1)(b) of IPC which intent to cause fear or alarm in the public and is being produced in court on Monday.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has said that no fake information should be shared during these times during the lockdown and has instructed the Police to identify such persons spreading information on whatsapp and social media platforms.