Coronavirus : WhatsApp group admin will be booked for rumors

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Mumbai, March 14, 2020: Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh said that many people are found spreading rumors in concern with the suspected Corona patients and wrong information is being disseminated through WhatsApp groups and social media. He directed the cyber police to hunt for the admins of such groups and they should be booked under the Information Technology Act. He also directed the cyber crime department to book the admin of such WhatsApp groups.

 The Minister today held a meeting of officers of home department for discussing the measures to be taken by home department on the backdrop of Corona virus outbreak in the state. Director General of Police Subodh Jaiswal, principal secretary of home department Amitabh Gupta, commissioner of Intelligence department Rashmi Shukla, additional Director General of Police (law and order) Rajnish Seth, special police inspector (law and order) Milind Bharambe, special IGP prison Deepak Pandey and other officers were present on the occasion.

Check up of jail inmates

The frequency of medical checkups of the jail inmates should be increased on the backdrop of Corona virus outbreak. The facility for Quarantine should be made available at the Arthur Road prison in Mumbai, in case of suspected inmates patient found as the number of inmates in this place is very large. The police should undertake manhunt for searching the suspected Corona patient who ran away from the hospital in Nagpur and admit him in the hospital, this directions was given by the home minister.

Mr Deshmukh said that the medical check-up of inmates in the jail of Maharashtra is regularly done but because of the spread of Corona virus in the present situation, the frequency of medical check-ups is required to be increased. He said that if needed, the suspected patients should be quarantined or shifted to isolation wards in coordination with the health department. He also said that if any jail has overcapacity of inmates, they should be shifted to other prisons.

 Mr Deshmukh said that the number of inmates in Arthur Road jail in Mumbai is more and some of them were recently shifted to Taloja jail. The home minister further said that one new barrack at the Arthur Road prison is vacant and if need arises and inmates with mild symptoms of cold and flu are found, they can be quarantined in this barrack. He said that in case of emergency, such patients can be shifted to isolation centre at Kasturba Gandhi hospital for further treatment. The minister also said that arrangements should be made for checking and treatment of inmates at the wards provided in JJ Hospital.

Strict action against spurious sanitizer and stocks of masks

Home Minister Mr Deshmukh said that complaints have been received about the stocks of used masks, washed and preserved for re-selling. He said that this is a type of serious crime that can land the people in crises and endanger the life of people. Such people will not be spared. He asked the police to get information about those engage in illegal stock of masks and take strict actions against them. Similarly, he said that there are complaints about shortage of sanitizer and hand wash and many vendors are selling that at exorbitant prices. They are also creating artificial shortage for paving way to black marketing. He asked the police to take strict action against such black marketers.

 Mr Deshmukh said that if the health department finds any patient suspected with Corona virus and if he is not ready to get quarantined or shifted to isolated wards, the health department can take the assistance of police department to get him admitted in the hospital. The home minister said that the cinema halls, theatres, swimming pools, gymnasium will all remain closed in Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai, Pune, Pimpri- Chinchwad and Nagpur cities till 31st March and this should be strictly followed. He asked the people not to get crowded and said that no permission should be given for any social, political, cultural, and religious or community and sports related gathering or programs in the entire state, adding that if such permissions are given earlier, they should be cancelled with immediate effect.