No Citizen Can Post on Coronavirus from Midnight: Fact Check

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No Citizen Can Post on Coronavirus from Midnight


Mandate for All: No Citizen Can Post on Coronavirus from Today Midnight.
Tonight 12 ( midnight) onwards Disaster Management Act has been implemented across the country. According to this update, apart from the Govt department no other citizen is allowed to post any update or share any forward related to Coronavirus and it being punishable offence.

Request Group Admins to post the above update and inform the groups.

Please adhere this strictly.

Fact Check:

A message popular on WhatsApp and other social media platforms claims about impementation of Disaster Management Act across India from midnight. It says apart from Government department, no other citizen can post any update or share any forward related to Coronavirus. Any such post, the message claims is now a punishable offence. No, the claims are not true and explained here.

No Citizen can Post on Coronavirus?

The message in question cites an article on Live Law website as an evidence of the claim. However, the mentioned article reported some other, related information. It is about Centre seeking Supreme Court direction that no media should publish COVID-19 news without first ascertaining facts with Government. Later, the article had an update with consequent directive from Supreme Court, which again is not exactly what the story mentions.

On 31st March 2020, Supreme Court directed media to publish official government version about developments with respect to COVID-19.

We expect the media (print, electronic, or social) to maintain a strong sense of responsibility and ensure that unverified news capable of causing panic is not disseminated,” a bench said.

Earlier, fake news created panic in Delhi, triggering mass migration of laborers amid the transmission of deadly Coronavirus. The division bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde held the apex court does not intend to interfere with the free discussion about the pandemic. But it “directs the media to refer and publish the official version about the developments“.

In its order, the court also reiterated regarding Section 54 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005. It provides punishment to a person who makes or circulates a false alarm or warning as to a disaster or its severity or magnitude, leading to panic. Such person will in fact face punishment in prison, which may extend to one year or with a fine.

So, the messages saying no citizen can post any update/share any forward related to Coronavirus is not a fact. However, the Supreme Court directive suggests everyone to maintain a strong sense of responsibility in sharing information. It is to be sure unverified news does not spread and cause any kind of panic.

Hoax or Fact:


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Prashanth Damarla