This comes after the latest lynching incident in Bidar, where a Hyderabad techie was killed, following another incident in Chamarajpet in Bengaluru.

After mob lynchings over child lifting rumours Bluru police to create awareness
news Crime Tuesday, July 17, 2018 - 09:48

Alarmed by the spate of rumour-driven mob lynchings, Bengaluru police on Monday decided to take steps to prevent such incidents by creating awareness about it.   

This comes after the latest lynching incident in Bidar, where a Hyderabad techie was killed, following another incident in Chamarajpet in Bengaluru. On both occasions, a gullible mob believed it was attacking a kidnapper after false rumours were spread on WhatsApp. 

City Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar told The New Indian Express that police personnel will approach citizens to create awareness about this issue.“The Hoysala staff have distributed pamphlets in the city. We have also taken to social media as part of a major awareness campaign to stop rumours being spread over WhatsApp (about child lifters). We have identified those sharing false messages of child-lifters and they have been sent to judicial custody.”

As part of the campaign, police want to make it clear that WhatsApp group admins and those who forward messages on WhatsApp will also be held responsible and action will be taken against them. 

Citizens are also being encouraged to approach the police instead of taking matters into their own hands. 

Over the last three months, at least 20 persons have been killed and several injured in incidents of mob violence sparked by rumours on WhatsApp of child kidnapping. Several other incidents have led to severe injuries. 

The incidents have been reported from around 10 states across the country, including in Karnataka. Police are taking no chances and are intent on creating awareness about this issue starting with Bengaluru. 

In Chamarajpet in the city, a brutal incident occurred on May 24 when an angered mob lynched a person they suspected was a child lifter. The Cyber Crime Police had  at the time issued a statement, which read, “Fake messages are spreading on SM channels regarding children trafficking. We ensure that it’s all false rumours, don't believe it, get annoyed or panic. If you find such suspects inform us, will take action. Criminal action will be taken against those spreading such false news.”

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