A CNN News 18 news clip from March 20, 2020 reporting Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray's announcement to compulsorily shut non-essential shops in Mumbai and Pune, is going viral on WhatsApp with a false claim that the chief minister has reimposed the lockdown starting June 15.
BOOM found that the news clip circulating is nearly three months old - even before a nationwide lockdown was announced on March 24.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray tweeted on Friday (June 12) that a lockdown has not be reimposed and urged people to refrain from crowding.
The lockdown has not been reimposed. CM Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray has appealed to the people to refrain from crowding. He has earnestly requested them to follow the Govt's instructions and take necessary precautions to stay safe and take care.— CMO Maharashtra (@CMOMaharashtra) June 12, 2020
The 4-minutes-and 34 seconds-clip is circulating with a false claim that Maharashtra will see another lockdown from June 15 to September 30, 2020.
The text of the viral message reads: "Lockdown again from 15th June, live on television just now. They are saying now again lockdown from 15th june right till September 30th." (sic)
The video accompanying the message is a clipping from a CNN News18 report it starts with the anchor who then tosses it over to the report to explain the details of the announcement.
BOOM received the message on it's helpline number as well.
The video being shared along with the text message is old and was uploaded on YouTube by CNN News18 on March 20, 2020.
The news report can be viewed on YouTube.
In a tweet, CNN News18 stated that the video is two months old and refers to restrictions announced at that time.
It has been noticed that an old video of CNN-News18 is being circulated online with a false claim that lockdown will be reimposed from June 15. This video is 2 months old & refers to the restrictions announced back then by the govt to combat COVID19.— CNNNews18 (@CNNnews18) June 12, 2020
The Maharashtra government began relaxation of lockdown measures in the state by launching Mission Begin Again. The first of the three phases began on June 3 with private offices allowed to operate with 10% staff and resumption of BEST services.
With overcrowding reported in many places, Thackeray had tweeted on June 10 that lockdown will be reimposed if "relaxations to the lockdown starts turning out to be risky." However, no decision has been taken so far on reimposing the lockdown.
Maharashtra has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in India. As of June 12, Maharashtra accounts for 97,648 total cases with 3,590 causalities. Mumbai has reported 53,985 positive cases as of June 11 and accounts for 1,952 COVID-19 deaths.
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