The rapid increase of fake news all across the social media portals has led to a lot of chaos and misleading information reaching to the world. It has, therefore, become very crucial to be careful when one is using Whatsapp, Facebook, Twitter and other social media portals. A recent claim that has been circulating around Twitter is that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has started a PM Mask Yojana, under which one would be able to get free masks.
Some people took to Twitter to share that PM Narendra Modi has brought forward a scheme named PM Mask Yojana, under which one will be able to receive a free supply of masks. These tweets have a link attached to them and they ask people to register on that link so that they can avail the offer. The link is named as https://narendrmodiawasyojna.in/?m=1. Here are some tweets about the PM Mask Yojana:
श्री नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने सवच्छ भारत के अंतर्गत सभी भर्तीओ को करोना वायरस मुक्त माक्स फ्री में देने का फैसला किया है आप भी निचे लिंक पर क्लिक करके अपना फ्री माक्स ऑर्डर करके पहनिए और सवच्छ भारत का हिस्सा बनिए।— अंजू मिश्रा (@AnjuMishraaa) March 16, 2020
करोना वायरस के बढ़ते प्रकोप से हमारे प्रधानमंत्री श्री नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने सवच्छ भारत के अंतर्गत सभी भर्तीओ को करोना वायरस मुक्त माक्स फ्री में देने का फैसला किया है आप भी निचे लिंक पर क्लिक करके अपना फ्री माक्स ऑर्डर करके पहनिए सवच्छ भारत का हिस्सा बनिए— Ekam Tehri (Modi ji)🇮🇳 (@Sidhearts_unity) March 17, 2020
One of the very first hints that one can find on why the news is fake is the link itself. Looking closely, one can see how the spelling of Narendra Modi is incorrect, which would have been impossible if the link would be the right one. The Press Information Bureau of India has also debunked the news and tweeted about how it is fake and misleading. The Fact Check account called the link fraudulent and informed that there is no scheme like PM Mask Yojana.
Claim : Amidst #CoronaOutbreak, a social media message claims free masks are being distributed by Government under 'PM Mask Yojana'. A link is provided for placement of orders#PIBFactCheck: There is no such scheme. This is a fraudulent link. Do not spread such #FakeNews pic.twitter.com/C17WQeRJGC— PIB Fact Check (@PIBFactCheck) May 1, 2020
The news of PM Mask Yojana is a new scheme started by the government in order to tackle the availability of masks started spreading from Twitter, and slowly started getting circulated on Whatsapp as well as Facebook. People started questioning the link and also tweeted about how the link seems to be fraudulent and fake. They tweeted about how the link looks fake and the scheme is just another way of people being misled.
It is important to be very careful when it comes to such kinds of messages and links that are shared on social media. All official sites when it comes to the different schemes started by the government are available and can be found if one searches on Google. Such fraudulent links can take personal information from people and misuse it for their own benefit. Thus, it is crucial to check whether the links are official and only then go forward.