Many heads turned curiously when Pulamanthol grama panchayat president V.P. Mohammed Haneefa took a stroll along the roads of Pulamanthol bazaar by holding the hand of an LPG distributor the other day. Mr. Haneefa had a big message to give to his people.

LPG distributor Ramachandran was being ostracised for COVID-19 in the name of false social media propaganda. Misled by the false propaganda, the local people of Pulamanthol and neighbouring areas had begun to shoo away Mr. Ramachandran.

“At first, I did not understand when some very familiar faces began to turn away from me. Soon I learned that a false message had spread among the people that I had contracted COVID-19,” Mr. Ramachandran said.

His attempts to convince the people that he was free of COVID-19 and that the message was false failed, as very few gave him an ear. As a last resort, he approached the panchayat president for help.

Mr. Haneefa grabbed Mr. Ramanchandran’s hand and walked through the bazaar. Many watched bemusedly as the duo covered the busy street corners, but some others came forward to apologise to Mr. Ramanchandran.

Mr. Haneefa said he knew Mr. Ramachandran and that he never wanted his means of living to be put at risk by a false propaganda. “I could convince the people of the danger of falling prey to false messages,” Mr. Haneefa said.

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