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After The Killer Floods, Kerala Now Faces A Bigger Challenge - Fake News Menace

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The age of the internet can lead to a zillion debacles within seconds. It's become a place where rumours and fake updates travel like wildfire and threaten to destroy the peace and sanity we possess as a society, thanks to a handful of tech-savvy, active internet operatives, who never fail to cease the chance to have a few jesting moments.

Kerala Floods: Fake News In The Way Of Relief Help© pixabay-free to use

What they don't realise, however, is that such misrepresentations and sarcastic pieces have the power to whip up abundant trouble online, while the repercussions dribble slowly onto the offline space. Since we got a taste of our share of having to deal with the fakes, here's giving you an update on the ones that you must steer clear of ASAP.

To Give You A Better Idea

Kerala Floods: Fake News In The Way Of Relief Help© pixabay-free to use

While you must have already figured it out for yourself, this story gives you a quick heads up on some of the fake news that is steadily surfacing on the internet and social media around the Kerala floods. 

All you need to do is identify them and nip in the bud before it turns into a pain in the arse for unassuming folks like many of us.

Fake News Alert 1

The most recent piece of information, or rather misleading information, that's surfaced across a number of social media channels is this rant by someone who goes by the name of Suresh Kochattil, who has now also been identified as an aspiring politician.

As can be seen from the post above, Kochattil is seen claiming that the elites of Kerala would not care for people's handouts and one must check with proper authorities before sending across materials, since as per his personal research, more than 200 truck-loads of material are waiting at Coimbatore and Mysore.

Thus, what people need is manpower and skilled labourers, plumbers, electricians and the likes, instead of money and materials since most Malayalis are rich people with ample money. 

Naturally, he has been bashed for his statements by the public for his uninvited claims and statements.

Fake News Alert 2

Imposter wearing Army combat uniform in video spreading disinformation about rescue & relief efforts. Every effort by all & #IndianArmy  aimed to overcome this terrifying human tragedy.Forward disinformation about #IndianArmy on WhatsApp +917290028579. We are at it #KeralaFloods pic.twitter.com/ncUR7tCkZW

— ADG PI - INDIAN ARMY (@adgpi) August 19, 2018

The Indian Army took to Twitter in a measure to prevent the fake news formulated by a man identified as Unni Nair, who is also an ex-serviceman, in the form of a video message spreading false information about the relief work being carried out by the paramilitary and the government in the flood-hit areas of Kerala. 

The Indian Army as well as Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan have condemned such acts and have warned that stringent action will be taken against the culprits. 

Which is why we say, cross-check before you send that forward.

Fake News Alert 3

Kerala Floods: Fake News In The Way Of Relief Help© Twitter

Though this story might have been put together as a satirical piece, it has backfired big time! A “satirical news portal” published a fake story on the floods claiming that a man lost his life after he refused to wear a saffron coloured life jacket that was offered to him during rescue operations because the colour is affiliated with Hindutva. 

Perhaps this was meant to be a critique of what our nation has come to of late. But that aspect of our society could have been mirrored in a different manner and not by playing on people's sentiments in a time of crisis, and surely not by adding political colour to it in order to invigorate people's political differences.

Kerala Floods: Fake News In The Way Of Relief Help© pixabay-free to use

There might just be more of such fake news lurking in the shadows to pounce upon unassuming people and we must be wary of them. This menace is only hurting those who are actually trying to do some good in the flood-ravaged state.

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