On September 22, 2016, the Western Naval Command has sounded the highest state of alert along the Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Thane and Raigad coasts in Maharashtra after reports of suspicious movement of an armed group dressed in Pathan suits in Uran. Two students – a girl and a boy – saw four to five people in Pathan suits with shoulder bags. A massive, multi-agency search by the Navy, Coast Guard, NSG and Maharashtra ATS was mounted.
But, now it turns out that the whole thing was a figment of a 12 year-old’s imagination. In a second round of questioning two days after Uran was put on high alert, the girl conceded that she had earlier seen pictures of IS terrorists wearing black clothes and flashing automatic weapons and she spread the false alert “for some thrill”. Her account got credence after some other students of her school also reported spotting them.
Once news channels started flashing the story, the rumour mills started working overtime with locals coming forward with their own versions of ‘terrorists movements’.
Are we turning back into a society of collective irrationality and rumour mongering in the name of fighting terror and patriotism. Do these baseless and false campaigns push real issues of the society and economy into the background.
New Sources :
- Mumbai On High Alert After ‘Suspected Terrorists’ Spotted Near Uran Naval Base
- 12-year-old’s hoax sparked Uran terror scare