Here is the catch: that message is false, almost.

Relax Chennai that alarmist WhatsApp text saying city will submerge under heavy rainfall is falseFlickr picture of Chennair rains in 2008 by Sonja Pleper
news Hoax message Wednesday, October 28, 2015 - 14:41

In the past couple of days, a message is being circulated via WhatsApp groups stating that one Mr. Kannan, supposedly the ‘Commissioner of Health and Safety, Chennai Corporation’ has warned that the city will be completely submerged after rains on October 28 and the city needs to prepare for that apocalyptic event.


Here is the full message

Flash:According to Met deptt, due to a low pressure formation from 26th Oct, which is likely to move North, there is going to be very heavy rain here on 28th and 29th Oct. According to one model, Chennai may see an unprecedented 30 cm of rain on 28th itself! If that happens, I figure, Chennai will be submerged. We really need to gear up now...

Sent by Mr. Kannan, Commissioner - Health & Safety, Chennai Corporation.

Please stock food items.... As there might be heavy demand


Here is the catch: that message is false, almost.

First of all, the Corporation of Chennai which is responsible for the civic governance of the city does not have a “Health and Safety” department.

There is one Mr. Kannan, however, and he is the Deputy Commissioner of Public Health and Family Welfare Department. He actually did speak about the rains, but nothing remotely close to that stated in the viral message.

Speaking to TNM, Kannan said that he had recently spoken about how the city corporation is getting prepared to cope with the expected rainfall, which is thought to be heavier than usual by meteorologists as an effect of the El Nino.

Kannan, who has received around 300 calls in the past two days seeking clarification, says that someone has tweaked his comment and has circulated on WhatsApp.

So those of you who have been circulating this altered WhatsApp message, do your bit and share this clarification too and stop people from panicking. 


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