Image of Lab Tech Faking COVID Reports Shared With Communal Twist
The man in the viral image is a lab technician from UP’s Unnao and not Mumbai, as claimed.
An image of a lab technician is being shared with a false claim that he’s Abdul Khan from Mumbai, who used to falsely declare Hindu patients as COVID positive.
However, the image that is being used in connection with the case is of another lab technician, identified as Amar Bahadur Chaudhary, who was arrested from Unnao in December 2020 for making fake COVID reports.
Further, it is true that Khan was arrested for making false COVID reports, but as per the police investigation, he did that for patients irrespective of their religion.
The claim was shared by Gaurav Mishra, principal correspondent at Sudharshan News, on Twitter. It had garnered over 1,200 likes at the time of writing this article.
User Anil Kumar Mishra had also garnered over 2,200 likes at time of writing this article.
The picture was widely shared on Facebook as well with the same claim.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
A simple keyword search led us to a report by News18 Hindi, carrying the viral image.
Speaking to The Quint’s WebQoof team, SHO Dinesh Chandra Mishra at the Kotwali Police Station stated that the claim was false and the accused in the case was a Hindu.
Circle Officer Gaurav Tripathi of Unnao’s Kotwali also rubbished the claims, stating that there was no communal angle to the incident. The words ‘Kotwali’ and ‘Unnav’, in Hindi, can also be seen in the viral image.
Clearly, the man in the viral image can not be a lab technician in Mumbai.
However, we found out about another incident, which happened in Mumbai, where one Abdul Khan, a pathology lab owner in Mumbai’s Shivaji Nagar was caught for generating fake COVID negative reports for senior citizens.
WHAT WAS THE CASE?
According to news reports, Khan collected blood and swab samples, which were then sent to a lab in Turbhe, Navi Mumbai.
Khan was caught generating a fake COVID negative report for a senior citizen. He had similarly duped other patients by collecting money, without conducting the tests and issuing false reports.
As per Senior Inspector Kishor Gaike at the Shivaji Nagar Police Station, Khan did this for “monetary gains”, but the matter is still under investigation. He also added that, as per the police investigation, he generated nine fake reports – six for Hindu patients and three for Muslims.
He also sent us the correct picture of the accused, Abdul Sajid Khan, which is not the same as the one in the viral message.
A case has been registered under several sections of cheating, fraud and forgery – 420, 418, 465, 468, 470, 471 – and sections 500 (for defamation),188 (for disobedience by public servant) of the IPC, sections 33 and 38 of the Maharashtra Medical Practitioners Act as well as Section 11 of the Maharashtra COVID Act for flouting guidelines were also invoked in the crime record number C 104/2021.
Evidently, an image of a lab assistant from UP has been falsely shared, identifying him as Abdul Khan from Mumbai.
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