Tamil Nadu's Tiruppur Police recently released a video to spread awareness about the importance of staying indoors and wearing a mask when stepping out to buy essentials, and it has gone viral on the internet with various misleading claims.
The video shows cops stopping 3 men on a scooter (without masks) at a checkpoint, and pushing them into an ambulance, while claiming that there is a COVID-19 patient in there. People are seen reacting with fear, while resisting the cops from pushing them inside.
At the end of the video, a police officer is heard saying, "When you roam around, anyone can have the novel coronavirus and you may not know. The government and the police officials have been stressing on the importance of staying indoors. If at all you need to come out to buy essentials, please wear masks."
When people don't follow #StayHome #WearAMask rules set by Govt, and roam around not practicing #SocialDistancing,— Apoorva Jayachandran (@Jay_Apoorva18) April 24, 2020
The #Tiruppur Police comes up with an innovative way to teach these youth a lesson they'll never forget!😂😂 #coronavirus #COVID #TNFightsCorona #CoronavirusIndia pic.twitter.com/M1CHOxBSRp
The video has been widely shared on the internet, with many mistaking it as real. BOOM also received this video on its helpline number, with one of the captions stating, "Madras Police rounded few guys coming on the road and put them in the ambulance with Fake Corona patient. Must watch....."
You have to appreciate this. Just brilliant. pic.twitter.com/ba81tJDKpb— Vishnu Manchu (@iVishnuManchu) April 24, 2020
यह वीडियो बनाया है तमिलनाडू #Tiruppur की पुलिस ने... @ThirupurP— Nighat Abbass (@officialnighta) April 24, 2020
पुलिसकर्मी बिना मास्क पहने लोगों को पकड़कर एक #नकली कोरोना रोगी के साथ एम्बुलेंस में बैठने पर मजबूर करते है, देखिये क्या होता है फिर...
TN Police ROCKS
DON'T MISS THE VIDEO.
Tamil Nadu Police at work. What an idea 👏🏼 lockdown violators put in an ambulance with fake COVID patient pic.twitter.com/zTbaON3bEy— Snehesh Alex Philip (@sneheshphilip) April 24, 2020
The incident was also reported by news portals like India Today and Times Now, and International Business Times. However, the news reports made no mention of whether the incident was staged or real, thus giving the impression that it actually happened.
Awareness Video Was An Enactment
We accessed the second half of the video, where the police officer clearly states that the video is an enactment. The young men who were being pushed inside the ambulance could also be seen standing behind the cops.
"There can be #coronavirus anywhere, that's why govt, police are repeatedly requesting people to #StayHome #WearAMask while coming out," says a #Tiruppur Police officer, also informing, the person inside IS NOT a #COVID (+ve) patient but a commoner.— Apoorva Jayachandran (@Jay_Apoorva18) April 24, 2020
The fear in the youth's eyes! pic.twitter.com/VyjUGkMn8F
BOOM spoke to the IPS Disha Mittal, Superintendent of Police in Tiruppur District, who confirmed to us that the entire video has been staged by Tiruppur Police and that every person in the video was acting.
"All precautionary measures have been taken before shooting this video. Those boys (in the video) were all civilians who were acting," Mittal told BOOM. "When something is not visible to naked eyes people will not care. But in the video, the fake corona patient becomes corona itself - and now people are scared of going near him. That is the idea behind the video."
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