THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In an attempt to exploit the Covid-19 fears, a couple of unhealthy ‘attacks’ are doing the rounds on social media to tarnish the image of people who were cured of the infection. A Covid-19 infected family at Manacaud, here, faced severe cyber-attack and wrath from local residents on allegations of violating quarantine protocol. The family of Bin Sagar, a young businessman in the city, was at the receiving end of society after his father, a 65-year-old expatriate, was tested Covid-19 positive.
On his arrival on March 22 from a West Asian country, the expat remained in home quarantine and was later hospitalised after he developed symptoms on March 30. Soon his samples came out positive. After treatment he was discharged from hospital recently, but his 83-year-old mother continued to be in quarantine. Later, she too was tested negative.
But the real issue started when Bin’s father returned home from hospital. Fake posts and news started doing the rounds on social media that he had succumbed to coronavirus. Bin could not remember the number of phone calls he had to answer clarifying his father’s death. “I received many phone calls about the funeral of my father who is alive. It is so disheartening that even the local residents complained to the district administration and health workers that my father is violating the quarantine rules and freely walking on streets of Manacaud.
When a health officer called me I explained the matter to him. Later, an online news portal carried fake news that the district administration had announced a ‘double lockdown’ at Manacaud and Ambalathara areas which fall under hotspot due to the irresponsibility of my family. We won’t do that,” Bin said.
Bin filed a complaint to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday to register a criminal case against those who were circulating the fake news. “The Chief Minister has responded to my complaint and said it has been forwarded to the DGP for action,” he said.