Mumbai: Maharashtra Cyber Police has warned of strict action against rumour-mongers who spread misleading and unverified information on social media regarding COVID-19, an official said on Wednesday.
According to the official, police have stepped up online surveillance to identify senders of such fake news and other content.
At 42, Maharashtra has reported the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the country so far.
The official said many instances of spreading of false and unverified news regarding coronavirus on various social media platforms have come to the fore.
These kind of posts can potentially lead to panic and terror among the common people, he said.
"Maharashtra cyber police are monitoring social media activities and will take stringent action against those found spreading such kind of false and unverified news and other contents," he said. Meanwhile, police have also appealed to all television news channels, newspapers and web portals to publish news related to coronavirus after confirming it from authorised sources.
The official said even common people can file complaints against rumour-mongers with local police stations or on www.cybercrime.gov.in.
As per the 'Maharashtra COVID-19 Regulations 2020' issued by the state Health department on Saturday those who spread rumours or fake news about coronavirus on social media will be held responsible under section 3 of the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897 and will be booked under section 188 of the IPC, the official added.