They had circulated false information about fresh cases of infection in Kalyan and Ulhasnagar
The police have registered criminal cases against two people, including a woman, for allegedly circulating fake messages on WhatsApp regarding “patients” of coronavirus. The state government has already issued instructions to cops to take strict action against those who are involved in spreading rumours or false information on social media.
Khadakpada police in Thane on Saturday registered a case against one JS Wadhwa under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) and 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions).
“One of our officers came to know that Wadhwa, a Kalyan resident, had circulated a message on a WhatsApp group that a woman from Ulhasnagar and her brother in Kalyan have tested positive,” said a police officer. When a police team reached her residence to inquire about the cases, she said that she had just forwarded the message without verifying the contents. She also said that she didn’t know the woman or the brother. When the cops warned her against spreading rumours and panic, she created a ruckus, said the officer. That’s when the police registered a case against her. In another case, a case was registered on Friday against a person who had informed the tehsilar in Shahapur about a tribal been infected by the virus. The information turned out to be false, police said.
Neelima Suryawanshi, the tehsildar, is the complainant in the case. “She received information on WhatsApp from a person, identified only as Belavle, who had said that a tribal in Shahapur had tested positive. When it proved to be false, he was booked under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the Indian Penal Code and section 51 (b) (punishment for obstruction) of Disaster Management Act 2005,” said a police officer.