Punjab DGP’s Warning:  Face penal action for spreading unverified, fake content on social media

Taking strong note of the unsubstantiated rumours and fake news being spread on the COVID-19 pandemic, Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta on Saturday strictly warned that those found guilty of indulging in such acts will be penalized and dealt with under the relevant provisions of the law.

In an advisory issued here, the DGP warned people against spreading baseless rumours and falsehood, with a series of dos and don’ts against using mobile phones and social media platforms to spread mischievous and unsubstantiated information, which can create unnecessary panic and hardship to all around. These are tools that help keep everyone connected and informed, he said, warning people against just sending forwards, or posting/spreading fake news.

Gupta requested the general public not to create panic / unrest through malicious forwards and social media posts.

Here’s what the DGP advised:

* Do not just send forwards. If you are yourself not sure of the information or the source of the information in the message, DO NOT FORWARD to friends and family.

* Show restraint in what you post on social media or send on WhatsApp. DO NOT SPREAD FAKE NEWS.

* Seek authentic sources or government helplines for information. DO NOT BELIEVE RUMOURS.

Pointing out that COVID-19 pandemic affects each one of us today, Gupta said it impacts our daily lives and it affects our livelihoods. The virus can be devastating for our families, our friends and our communities, he warned, adding that the safety and welfare of each one of our family members, our work colleagues and everyone around is of paramount importance, with the authorities doing their best to battle the problem.