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PIB fact checks rumours about PM Narendra Modi’s appeal to switch off lights for 9 minutes
4/4/2020 11:39:22 AM
NEW DELHI: Press Information Bureau, which is a nodal agency of the Government of India, has appealed to the people to not believe in rumours and unscientific forwards about Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal to appeal to switch off lights for 9 minutes at 9 PM on April 5 for dispelling the darkness of coronavirus.

Calling such posts “rumours/unscientific reasoning”, the PIB’s Fact Check Twitter handle has requested people not to fall for such messages.“Don’t fall for the rumours/unscientific reasoning on the appeal for lightning Diya/candles/flash/torch on 5th April at 9 pm,” the PIB tweet said. “This initiative is to show solidarity and confidence in our collective fight against #Covid19,” it said adding, “Please maintain social distancing to keep COVID-19 at bay!’’The PIB tweet was also accompanied with three screenshots of such messages circulating in WhatsApp groups and other online platforms.

The appeal from the PIB came hours after the Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered a brief video message on Friday and urged the countrymen to light candles and mobile flashlights on April 9 for 9 minutes in a show of solidarity in the fight against coronavirus.

No sooner was the message delivered than people began speculating reasons for this appeal. WhatsApp and social media platforms have since been rife with many misleading messages that sought to ‘explain’ and ‘analyze’ the initiative.

India on Friday (April 3, 2020) witnessed the highest spike so far with 478 cases reported in the last 24 hours. The total number of positive cases till 10.30 pm (IST) on April 3 reached 2,547 and the death toll stood at 62. 157 patients have recovered from the coronavirus so far, as per the latest data of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The highest number of cases so far has been recorded in Maharashtra (335 cases, 16 deaths), followed by Tamil Nadu (309 cases, 1 death), Kerala (286 cases, 2 deaths), Delhi (219 cases, 4 deaths) and Uttar Pradesh (172 cases, 2 deaths).
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