A picture showing mould on leather goods like shoes, bags and jackets has been doing the round on social media. It is being claimed that the pictures are from Shoppers Stop, India.
According to the caption accompanying these posts, leather products have developed mould because the airconditioning system in the mall was shut due to the lockdown. The message further warns against visiting malls for four months.
"Imagine when malls open the fungus in the ducts will fly free in closed atmosphere of malls….. entering our respiratory system….. leading to major infection," a caption reads.
In a step to stop the spread of COVID-19, the state governments had ordered the closure of cinema halls, gyms, swimming pools and malls in mid-March. They remain shut till date.
Viral photos showing mould on leather goods is from India.
The claim is false.
Photos Not From India
A reverse image search led us to news a report by Daily Mail published on May 11 which stated that the images were taken at a store in Sabah, Malaysia.
Titled, 'Leather products are covered in MOULD after they were left untouched in Malaysian store closed for two months due to coronavirus' has the images same as the viral posts.
Malaysia's movement control order (MCO), the lockdown imposed by Malaysia had started on 18 March and has been extended until 9 June.
Another report mentions that the incident occurred in Metrojaya store in Suria Sabah and the photos were taken by the staff for internal use.
A statement was issued by the store on its Facebook page, confirming that the incident occurred in the said store.
"There are various reasons how the goods came to be in that condition and we are still in the process of investigating this. All damaged goods have now been removed from our shelves and replaced with new stocks," they wrote.
Further, several other images and videos were found which showed workers cleaning and disinfecting the place.
A video titled, 'Shopping mall finds leather goods covered in mould after lockdown' was also posted by CGTN on Youtube.