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WebQoof Recap: Fake Claims Around Bandra Migrant Crisis & More

Here’s a quick round-up of the WhatsApp forwards and fake tweets that misled the public this week.

Published
WebQoof
4 min read
Here’s a quick round-up of the WhatsApp forwards and fake tweets that misled the public this week.
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Fake news around the novel coronavirus has refused to die down. The Quint has so far debunked nearly 120 stories around COVID-19 and for yet another week, misinformation around the novel virus continued to dominate the news cycle and the fake news around it.

So, here’s a quick round-up of the WhatsApp forwards and fake tweets that misled the public this week.

1. Bandra Migrant Crisis: From Misreporting to False Communal Claims

On Tuesday, 14 April, as India geared up for another phase of COVID-19 lockdown, around 1,500 migrant workers gathered near Mumbai’s Bandra train station flouting the lockdown norms.

Soon, a barrage of unverified images, videos and claims were circulated on the internet giving it a communal spin. To support the claim, many Twitter users like filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri, Shefali Vaidya shared a video of a Muslim man, who can be seen speaking to the crowd, speculating if it was a ‘religious congregation’.

(Click here for live updates on COVID-19. Also visit Quint Fit for comprehensive coverage on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.)

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But on listening to the audio, one can decipher that the man, who is yet to be identified by the police, was urging the crowd to disperse.

Speaking to The Quint, DCP Pranaya Ashok, Mumbai Police Spokesperson said that these were migrant workers who wanted to go back home. He also said that just because they weren’t carrying their bags doesn’t mean they didn’t intend to board the trains.

Further Mumbai Police gave details of the incident and clarified that it wasn’t a communal one.

You can read the story here.

2. Republic, ANI Falsely Claim Madhya Pradesh Man Died of COVID-19

As the number of coronavirus cases continue to grow across India, a news report by news agency ANI, which has been archived here, dated 8 April, said that a man in Madhya Pradesh’s Khargone had passed away from COVID-19 on 28 March.

According to their report, eight people in the man’s family had also tested positive for COVID-19. According to their report, the family had been infected by the man, who had attended the Tablighi Jamaat event in New Delhi, which has now been declared a coronavirus hotspot.

The Quint has hidden the identity of the patient.

WebQoof Recap: Fake Claims Around Bandra Migrant Crisis & More
(Photo: ANI/Screenshot)

The claim that the man hid his travel history and died of coronavirus made by both ANI and Republic is false. The man, who did indeed test positive, was actually undergoing treatment at Indore’s Maharaja Hospital and had gotten himself tested after returning to Khargone. He has now been discharged from care as well, after having tested negative twice for the novel coronavirus.

You can read the story here.

3. Old Population Map of India Shared With False Coronavirus Context

A ‘re-designed’ map of India showing its states as countries of the world in accordance with their population has been going viral on social media with the claim that this has been designed by an American CEO to show how India is indirectly combatting the COVID-19 situation of many countries. The message then goes on to say how Modi’s handling of the crisis is much appreciated.

WebQoof Recap: Fake Claims Around Bandra Migrant Crisis & More
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter)

While the map exists, it is old and has nothing to do with the current outbreak of coronavirus and PM Modi’s handling of the situation. It was made simply as a population comparison four years ago.

You can read the story here.

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4. No Data to Support: Experts on Claims Kalonji Seeds Cure COVID-19

A viral message on social media claims that HCQ is found 100 percent in Kalonji seeds (Nigella sativa). It further advises to take half a teaspoon of the seeds with honey as a preventive measure against the novel coronavirus. Some users have shared a NDTV article with the headline: 10 Incredible Health Benefits Of Kalonji (Nigella Seeds), along with the message.

The claim being made in the social media posts lacks medical evidence. Experts told The Quint that neither do Kalonji seeds contain hydroxychloroquine nor is there scientific data to prove that the seeds can cure COVID-19.

The NDTV article that is being shared with the message dates back to 2018, which talks about the benefits of consuming Kalonji seeds which includes: strengthening immunity, protecting kidney, joint pain, blood pressure fluctuation among others.

You can read the story here.

5. Video of Pak’s JUI-F Leader on Lockdown Being Shared as From India

A viral video which shows a bunch of men standing and talking about mosques being shut due to the coronavirus pandemic is being circulated on social media with a claim that ‘Jihadis’ are warning that they will not listen to the government’s instructions.

WebQoof Recap: Fake Claims Around Bandra Migrant Crisis & More
(Photo Courtesy: Facebook)

While the incident did happen, but the video is not from India. Rather, it’s from Pakistan and the man seen in the video is Mufti Kifayatullah, leader of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (F), who has now been arrested after he attended funeral of one Maulana Abdul Aziz.

You can read the story here.

You can read all our fact-checked stories here.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9643651818, or e-mail it to us at webqoof@thequint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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