While the Rs 15 lakh deposit turned out to be fake news, 1050 new postal bank savings accounts were opened in three days.

People in Munnar rush to open postal accounts over fake news on Centre giving Rs 15 lakh
news Fake news Thursday, August 01, 2019 - 07:55

For three days, the Munnar town post office witnessed a rush of visitors like never before. Scores lined up to open postal accounts on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. This after fake news spread like wildfire that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised Rs 3-15 lakh deposit for those who have postal accounts.

Estate workers from many parts of Munnar arrived after taking leave from work to open postal accounts. Even police had to reach the spot to regulate the crowd in view of the commotion that took place at the post office. The post office officials conducted a special drive for the workers to open accounts.

The officials clearly stated that they were unaware of any such announcement from the Central government and no information regarding the same was passed on to the public from any post offices. "We did not give any information that they will get benefits by opening postal accounts. Last week, there were directions from the postal department to open Rs 1 crore new accounts and we arranged the facility also. As per the scheme, a deposit of Rs 100, Aadhar Card and two passport size photographs were required to start the savings bank account," said V. Paramasivom, Superintendent of Post Office.

On Monday, another rumour spread that land and houses will be distributed for free by the government. The Regional District Office at Devikulam witnessed another rush from the workers. A long queue was seen in front of the office for "free land and home" in the morning. 

The fake news was that those who were not included in the list of land distribution at Kuttiyarvalley in August, have got a golden opportunity by submitting their applications at Devikulam office.

Finally, the RDO officials issued a notice that it was not a direction issued from the office. Devikulam sub-collector Renuraj directed the police to take action against the rumour-mongers.

"I had also erected a board in front of the office that there was no special benefit for the new account holders. We didn't issue any message regarding the benefits of the accounts. We suspect that someone spread the fake news through WhatsApp or social media. Within three days, we opened 1050 new savings accounts under the postal bank,” said Paramasivam.

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