Terror threats attributed to police and intelligence ahead of Independence Day are very common hoax messages which are circulated on social media.
One such message attributed to Mumbai Police Commissioner is being circulated on WhatsApp and Facebook. The message that comes with a video message reads, “Total Mumbai under terrorist attack. Please be careful. All railway stations. All bars and cinema halls. Auditoriums. All public places. Please forward to all groups. Jay Hind.
The message is being widely shared on Facebook.
In the video clipping, the man can be heard saying, “Intelligence agencies have hinted that after revoking 370 from Jammu and Kashmir Pakistan army, Pakistan intelligence agency ISI is planning to attack Indian cities.”
He then goes on to add that 19 cities will be targeted and attacked, therefore, cities have been put on red alert. He also says that the citizens need to take care of their area and inform the security agencies in case of any suspicious activity.
The video has also been shared by Actor Jaywant Wadkar on his official Facebook page.
TRUE OR FALSE?
Firstly, the Mumbai police has not issued any such advisory. Secondly, the man in the video is not Mumbai police commissioner but Retd Brigadier Hemant Mahajan. The current Commissioner of Mumbai Police is Sanjay Barve.
Inspector General of Police, Cyber, Brijesh Singh, took to Twitter to clarify that no such advisory has been issued by Mumbai Police.
Singh, in his tweet, has categorically denied any government official/authority having issued a security threat. He also added that the man in the viral video is a man from Pune.
WHO IS HEMANT MAHAJAN?
The Quint got in touch with Brigadier Hemant Mahajan who told us that the video is from a soundbite that he had given to a Marathi news channel. Mahajan is an ex-army officer who has served in counter insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Northeast.
On being asked about the intelligence report on “security threats” he said that the information was published by multiple dailies and that he was asked his views by a news channel on the issue.
“I have only said that the security forces will always fall short in number so the people should always be alert and cautious in case of any mishap or unforeseen event,” Mahajan told The Quint.
A different clip with a similar message was also posted on his YouTube page on 8 August 2019.
(With inputs from SM Hoax Slayer)
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