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Govt steps up surveillance on medical workers in fight against Coronavirus

Delhi Police has sought details of admins of Whatsapp groups at Safdarjung Hospital to monitor the social media behaviour of medical workers

twitter-logo BusinessToday.In        Last Updated: April 4, 2020  | 12:05 IST
Govt steps up surveillance on medical workers in fight against Coronavirus

The government has stepped up surveillance on health workers amid rumours and fake news about coronavirus which have hurt India's fight against the global pandemic.

Delhi Police has sought details of admins of Whatsapp groups at Safdarjung Hospital to monitor the social media behaviour of medical workers.

The move is similar to that in the US where authorities have started monitoring medical workers who used social media to complain about shortage of essential medical equipments such as masks and personal protective equipment for treatment of coronavirus patients.

Coronavirus in India Live Updates: Active cases rise to 2,322; Maharashtra tops tally with 335

Subsequently, the Safdarjung Hospital administration has asked its staff to provide the same as per legal requirement.

In a notification, Dr Prem Kumar, additional medical superintendent of the hospital has asked the staff to submit names, mobile numbers and email of all admins of whatsapp groups,

The details will be forwarded to police.

"I am directed by competent authority that as a legal requirement names, mobile numbers, e-mail of all admins of WhatsApp Group of Hospital are required for onward transmission to police. This is required to prevent spreading of any fake news, rumour or any other adverse comments, statements on social media and in the institution by any hospital or college staff,"stated the circular, signed by the Additional Medical Superintendent.

The notification further stated that this information was required to prevent spreading of any fake news or rumours or any adverse comments on social media and in the institution by any hospital or college staff.

Meanwhile, in India the number of cases has risen to 2,322 according to the health ministry. The number of deaths has risen to 62, while 162 have been cured or discharged.

By Aseem Thapliyal

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