Hyderabad: A post warning people against consuming any kind of cold drinks in the upcoming days has gone viral on social media. According to the post, the Hyderabad police put out the warning after a worker mixed "the blood of a dangerous virus called Ebola" in the drinks. It also claimed that the news was aired by NDTV.
The claim is false.
The post claims that the Hyderabad police have sounded the alarm. We did a keyword search to find if any such information was passed on by the Hyderabad city police. However, no such message was circulated by the Hyderabad cops. Instead, we found a tweet by the Hyderabad police from 13 July 2019 stating that it was fake news and that the Hyderabad police have not released any such message.
This also proves that this news is old as the tweet by the Hyderabad police contained similar photos.
NewsMeter also found reports by many news organizations that had debunked the viral message in 2019.
Reports by 'News Minute' and 'Navbharat Times' had said that the messages were not being circulated by the Hyderabad police. 'News Minute' had quoted Avinash Mohanty, the joint commissioner of police, detective department, who said that forwarding such fake posts and rumors is liable for punishment under law. Hence, the general public should not forward such posts which will cause panic and alarm in the general public, he had said.
Further, NewsMeter did a Google reverse image search and found a YouTube video posted on the channel 'Tape news'. The video was aired on 10 March 2018 and claimed a dangerous virus had been mixed in cold drinks.
The viral post also mentioned that the news was aired on NDTV. However, neither any reports nor any videos relating to the claim were published by NDTV.
We also visited the website of Center for Disease Control and Prevention and according to a note on the website, "Ebola virus usually does not spread through food. However, in some parts of the world, the Ebola virus can be spread through or consumption of bushmeat (meat from wild animals)."
Therefore, the claim that the Ebola virus has been mixed in cold drinks is false. Neither was the message circulated by the Hyderabad police nor was it aired on NDTV. CDCP had also said that the Ebola virus cannot be transmitted through food. False news related to the Ebola virus has been doing the rounds since 2014 when there was an Ebola virus outbreak in India.