A police complaint seeking action against a television panelist in Telangana was filed on Monday for his comments on possible deaths during the third wave of the COVID-19. The complaint was filed by the state's Director of Public Health and Family Welfare Dr G Srinivas Rao against a chemical engineer, Paruchuri Mallik. The TV panelist allegedly stated on a live television channel talk show that every house in Telangana will report deaths during the third wave of COVID-19.
In the complaint lodged at the Sultan Bazar police station, the Director of Public Health said that the comments passed by Paruchuri Mallik, "are highly objectionable in terms of medical ethics regarding the third wave and will create panic among the general populace." Srinivasa Rao stated in his complaint that Mallik is not a subject expert and sought action against Mallik under Section 54 of the National Disaster Management Act for spreading false warnings, leading to panic among people. The police said that they were looking into the complaint and will take appropriate action.
"No institution/individual (globally even) had any experience/scientific prediction regarding the impending third wave, its effect on families or children," reads the complaint. Unnecessary spreading of rumours which are unfounded and do not have any scientific backing by Mallik will definitely cause panic and great distress to the common man, it added.
The official said, "Passing such negative, demotivating, scary statements, based on falsehood, lies, without any basis/evidence by an unqualified, non-caring person amounts to gross criminal act with malafide intentions, for focus on self and gaining cheap publicity and popularity."
Addressing a news conference, Srinivas Rao appealed to people not to believe these rumours. He reiterated that the state is prepared for a possible third wave as it is well equipped in terms of hospital beds, medicines, oxygen and manpower.