A viral one-minute-long video claiming that the World Health Organisation has issued a report that India will see close to 50,000 COVID-19 deaths by April 15 and that the next 72 hours will be crucial for the country is falsely attributed to the apex health organisation.
WHO took to Twitter to deny that they had issued any such notifications for the country. This video which was first viral in 2020 has resurfaced after India crossed 1 lakh daily cases on April 5 and after many states have imposed fresh restrictions and night curfews to curb the spread of the virus.
The video bears the logo News 24 Live and tries to pass itself as a video reported by the news channel.
Voiced by a woman who asks people to share this video, the video is made by combining several images and no headlines. It has only two Breaking News and Live News tickers flashing on the screen while the pictures keep moving in the form of a slideshow.
In the video, the woman is heard saying "Important news coming from the WHO. The next 72-108 hours for India are crucial. The WHO and ICMR have stated that if in the next 20 hours, India does not control the spread of the virus, India will enter the third stage of transmission- community transmission after which India will witness close to 50,000 deaths by April 15. Let's avoid India getting into the third stage of community transmission and let us pray to God that we stay in stage two."
India announced its first lockdown on March 24, 2020 and then slowly started reopening its facilities. During the first peak of the virus in August- October, India was reporting the highest number of deaths. India, however, in the course of the pandemic so far has not reported 50,000 deaths in a span of 15 days. India reported its first 50,000 dates on August 29, 2020, five months after reporting the first COVID-19 death.
The country was also contesting going into community transmission at the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020. Even though the first case was reported on January 30, 2020, coronavirus picked up pace in the country only in the month of March. Till the month of June, the stage at which India was in the pandemic was debated in every press briefing. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, never acknowledged that India moved into the community transmission phase but active transmission with a high rate of transmission was observed in the months of August- October and is also being witnessed now.
Even though India is witnessing an increase in cases, the country has also increased its testing capacities and brought down the positivity rate. According to the WHO, a country has the pandemic under control if its positivity rate is less than 5%. India's current total positivity rate stands at 5.08% but the positivity rate in the last 24 hours is at 8%