An edited screenshot of a TV9 Bharatvarsh bulletin is doing rounds on social media to claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be announcing a nationwide lockdown, set to be stricter than last year's, amid the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.
We found that the TV9 Bharatvarsh bulletin, dated 17 April, was actually reporting on Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar's warning of a possible lockdown in the state.
The text of the bulletin has been edited to say 'Bharat' instead of 'Maharashtra', in the viral screenshot.
The screenshot was shared by several users on Facebook.
WHAT WE FOUND
With a relevant keyword search, we came across a bulletin by TV9 Bharatvarsh dated 17 April 2021, stating that there's a possibility of a strict lockdown in Maharashtra, according to Deputy CM Ajit Pawar.
The word 'महाराष्ट्र' (Maharashtra) has been edited to say 'भारत' (Bharat) in the viral screenshot. The text at the top has also been changed, from "महाराष्ट्र में लगेगा लॉकडाउन.. अजित पवार ने दिए संकेत" (Translation: "Maharashtra will face lockdown... Ajit Pawar gave hints") to "भारत में लगेगा लॉकडाउन.. पीएम मोदी ने दिए संकेत" (Translation: "India will face lockdown... PM Modi gave hints")
While the text at the bottom has been added to the bulletin, PM Modi's image has been edited onto Pawar's photo.
With a combination of reverse image and keyword searches, we found that the image of PM Modi used in the viral screenshot is from a virtual address at the inauguration of Bengaluru Technological Summit 2020 on 19 November 2020.
In fact, contrary to the viral screenshot, in an address to the nation on Tuesday, 20 April, PM Modi had requested the various state governments to implement lockdowns only as a “last-resort measure.”
He advised that the states should "try to avoid lockdowns as much as possible and the focus needs to be on effective micro-containment zones."
Several states including Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, among others have announced stricter curbs with the rising COVID-19 cases. The Quint's FAQs on what's allowed and what's not in different states can be viewed here.
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