Chandigarh: In a decisive action, the Punjab Police has got scores of social media accounts/links blocked by competent authorities to curb spate of misinformation about COVID-19 control measures taken by the state government including testing.
The step has been taken as part of the crackdown ordered by the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh against the miscreants inciting the public with malicious hate content on organ harvesting being circulated on social media.
Total of 151 accounts/links of Facebook, 100 of Twitter, 4 Instagram and 37 of YouTube have been reported to the concerned authorities of these social media platforms, with 121 FIRs registered so far at various police stations across Punjab.
Punjab police’s Bureau of Investigations (BoI) had taken up the matter of blocking the spiteful accounts/links of anti-national and anti-social elements with the Cyber Law Division, Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India.
This has resulted in blocking of 108 accounts/links. Further action on the remaining accounts is awaited, said Dinker Gupta, Director General of Police (DGP), Punjab.
Competent authorities of the social media platforms have also been requested to provide information about unscrupulous users so that suitable legal action is initiated against them under the relevant provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and the Indian Penal Code.
Videos are being uploaded by the miscreants to incite public in the name of “human organ trade during COVID-19” unleashing a wave of misinformation that doctors and para medics are falsely declaring people COVID-19 positive and then they are taking out their organs for monetary benefits.
The Chief Minister has repeatedly expressed concern over the loss of lives resulting from delayed testing as people misled by these fake posts/videos are not going for testing and treatment to hospitals, said an official spokesperson.
Meanwhile, Director BoI, the State Cyber Crime Cell, Punjab, Arpit Shukla has also appealed the people to not share any kind of unverified and unauthentic posts, news, videos or stories regarding COVID-19 on social media platforms in the public safety interest.