Police teams to monitor social media to root out rumours

Social Media

With rumours triggering panic among people, the Delhi Police have set up teams to monitor social media, a fertile ground for unfounded speculations.

In addition, the Deputy Commissioners of Police (DCPs) in all districts have been asked to remain on the field at various locations, while the top brass is issuing daily instructions based on the on-field reports.

On Sunday, another rumour about an increased cash-withdrawal limit started doing the rounds, and the Delhi Police had to issue an advisory to warn the people. “Rumours regarding the facility to withdraw more money from the RBI after getting the official stamp of the area DCP are being spread in Delhi over WhatsApp. These rumours are false and baseless. It is advised that citizens should disregard such rumours. They are being spread by mischievous elements. Action is being taken against such rumour-mongering. Citizens should only rely and act upon information provided by authentic and verified government websites and press releases,” the advisory stated.

Multiple rumours, including those of murder, loot and traffic jams due to the shortage of cash, were spread in the Capital. Some miscreants spread a rumour that people were looting stocks in a mall in Seelampur, and the Delhi Police had to issue another advisory.

“It is a self-catering mall, which allows entry only to card holders. Routine disbursal of stocks was being done. Some mischievous elements tried to portray it as looting. The local police intervened immediately and removed the miscreants. No complaint of looting was received,” the police stated.

The department further said that people spreading such false and baseless rumours could be booked under Sections 153 and 505 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), along with Sections of the Information Technology Act. Meanwhile on Sunday, the Central Control Room continuously received calls from people standing outside ATMs and banks. Most calls were regarding long queues, claimed the police. One instance of a minor scuffle was reported at a bank in the Subzi Mandi area of north Delhi, cops said.