Behind The Bars: Think Twice Before Sharing That ‘Shocking’ Photo or Video on Social Media
Image source: Hack For lab
While the Supreme Court may have struck down Section 66 A of the IT Act, 2000 in a bid to promote free speech online, there still remains a thin line between content that can and cannot be published on cyberspace without attracting legal consequences. A classic example of the latter category is disbursing falsified information in the form of photographs, audio or video clips on a public platform to deliberately mislead and spread panic among the masses, as one Mysuru-based businessman found out first-hand.
On Saturday, 35-year-old Deepak Kulkarni was arrested by the city’s Central division police for allegedly uploading CCTV footage of a murder on his Facebook profile claiming it had taken place inside Garuda Mall in Ashoknagar, Bengaluru on Tuesday; when the incident had actually occurred in a textiles shop Sri Lanka, last week!
The video was shared almost 900 times in less than 24 hours, causing netizens to freak and bombard the internet questioning their own safety in Bengaluru and expressing shock that such an incident could have taken place inside a bustling shopping mall in the presence of so many shoppers.
A scared Kulkarni then proceeded to delete the video from his profile, claiming he was “ready to face the consequences as he had not committed a crime”.
The damage had already been done, however, and the authorities of Garuda Mall tendered a complaint against Kulkarni to the Central division police, who slapped a case of defamation against him and arrested him.
This should also serve as a strict warning that we will certainly take action against anyone spreading false information or creating panic among the public. People should be careful while forwarding messages or photographs without verifying the authenticity of the material
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