CHITTOOR: A TikTok video with tips and “home remedies” to keep oneself safe from the coronavirus has landed two families in hospital.
Despite several advisories from the State and Central health departments and doctors’ repeated appeals to the public not to trust unscientific remedies to fight COVID-19, people from rural areas still opt for the fraudulent solutions they find on social media.
In the remote village of Alapalli under Byreddipalle mandal in Chittoor district, two families on Tuesday drank a juice made of the seeds of Datura Stramonium (locally called ‘ummetha kaya’ and easily available in villages) believing that it would keep them from contracting the virus.
“The two families, comprising 10 people, had watched videos on TikTok which said drinking the juice of ummetha would keep coronavirus away,” Byreddipalle Sub-Inspector of Police Muni Swamy told TNIE.
However, after drinking the juice, they fell ill, and neighbours found them in a semi-conscious state and took them to the area hospital. They were treated and later discharged in the evening.
Chittoor District Medical and Health Officer Dr M Penchalaiah appealed to the public not to fall for rumours and follow “home remedies” that have not been verified by medical experts.
“As of now, there is no vaccine for COVID-19. Trials are still underway. Stay home, stay safe, and follow the preventive measures issued by the health department,” he said.Rumours on social media even claim that country arrack is an antidote to the virus.
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