Maharashtra Cyber Wing has registered 363 offences of rumour mongering, spreading misinformation, hatred and fake news on social media during the COVID-19 lockdown, an official said on Saturday. The state police's cyber wing has been monitoring online activities to prevent the spread of misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic.
As many as 196 persons were arrested for sharing or uploading objectionable posts, videos and photographs on social media, the official said. In Sangli district, a case was registered against some people for uploading a Tik-Tok video about a particular community being responsible for the pandemic and also using abusive language against prominent social reformers, he said.
At least 14 offences were registered by the cyber wing in the district since the lockdown was enforced, he added. Similarly, in Parli town of Beed district, some persons were booked for a social media post linking the spread of COVID-19 to a particular community, he said, adding that the district had recorded highest number of cyber offences during the lockdown.
Of the 363 offences registered so far, at least 155 cases were related to WhatsApp forwards, while 140 were for objectionable Facebook posts, the official said. The cyber wing had deleted at least 101 objectionable posts from social media platforms during the lockdown, he added.