State dept of health & family welfare issues circular in a bid to stop spread of rumours and fake news reports in print or electronic media amid coronavirus pandemic
Dimapur: With COVID-19 aka coronavirus spreading in Northeast India along with the rest of the world, the number of rumours and fake news items has also been increasing on social media in the past few days.
With an aim to stop the spread of such rumours and fake news reports, the Nagaland department of health and family welfare issued a circular on Wednesday saying that “no individual, institution or organisation will use any print or electronic media for information regarding COVID-19 without prior permission from recognised authority”.
The circular further read, “During the current crisis situation of COVID-19 pandemic, it has been observed that the identity of people affected by the disease or suspected to be a positive case are exposed and circulated in social media which could lead to stigmatization and mental trauma.”
The department further stated in the circular that “in reference to Penalty clause of Nagaland Epidenic Disease (COVID-19) Regulations 2020 (Clause 21): anyone who exposes the identity of COVID-19 affected people through sharing of bio-data or photo in various print or electronic media, shall be penalized under Section 188 of Indian Penal Code 1860 (45 of 1860)”.