The mid-April Emergency declaration is not the only rumour doing the rounds. (Photo Credit: File Photo)
Amid the deluge of false claims and fake news on the social media, one story that is doing rounds is that of impending declaration of 'Emergency' by the Narendra Modi government. Several people have posted comments claiming that since the lockdown is not helping in containing the spread of coronavirus infections, the Modi government will impose 'Emergency' in the country as soon as the period of lockdown ends. There were claims that the Indian Army will also seek to induct civilians during the Emergency. Taking the note of the viral claim, the Indian Army on Monday issued a clarification over the matter. "Fake and malicious messages are circulating on social media about likely declaration of emergency in mid-April and employment of #IndianArmy, #Veterans, NCC and NSS to assist the civil administration. It is clarified that this is absolutely FAKE," the Army said via its official Twitter handle. (Coronavirus Outbreak LIVE Updates)
Fake and malicious messages are circulating on social media about likely declaration of emergency in mid April and employment of #IndianArmy, #Veterans, NCC and NSS to assist the civil administration.— ADG PI - INDIAN ARMY (@adgpi) March 30, 2020
It is clarified that this is absolutely FAKE. pic.twitter.com/YnbLnBZGY0
The mid-April Emergency declaration is not the only rumour doing the rounds. Earlier, there were claims on the internet that to curb the community transmission of the coronavirus, the Modi government will extend the 21-day lockdown. The government on Monday said there was no plan to extend the 21-day lockdown which came into force on February 24 midnight. India is under day six of the lockdown aimed at checking the spread of the coronavirus. People have been asked to stay indoors while only those providing or availing essential services are being allowed outside. There have been several reports and speculations that the lockdown may be extended beyond April 14. The total number of COVID-19 positive cases in India crossed 1,000 on Sunday. The Press Information Bureau (PIB) of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting tweeted, saying Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba has denied media reports claiming that the government will extend the lockdown. "There are rumours & media reports, claiming that the Government will extend the #Lockdown21 when it expires. The Cabinet Secretary has denied these reports, and stated that they are baseless," it said.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Monday observed that the migration of labourers out of panic and fear is becoming a bigger problem than the coronavirus. Hearing petitions seeking relief for thousands of migrant workers, the top court said it would not create more confusion by issuing directions on measures that the government is already taking to deal with the issue. The Supreme Court, however, sought a status report from the Centre by Tuesday on the measures taken in view of the large-scale migration of labourers to their native villages.
Many migrant workers are leaving big cities en masse as they lack resources to sustain during the 21-day coronavirus lockdown issued to contain coronavirus outbreak. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the 21-day lockdown on March 24. Since then, there has been an exodus of migrant workers from big cities to their villages due to the lockdown. These migrant workers, who worked as daily wagers in big cities, have started journeying towards their native villages.
The Centre on Sunday asked state governments and Union Territory administrations to effectively seal state and district borders to stop movements of migrant workers during lockdown, officials said. During a video conference with Chief Secretaries and DGPs, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba and Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla asked them to ensure that there is no movement of people across cities or on highways as the lockdown continues. "There has been a movement of migrant workers in some parts of the country. Directions were issued that district and state borders should be effectively sealed," a government official said.
(With agency inputs)