Anurag Thakur, a Union minister, called the transmission of false information and disinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic, an “infodemic” on Saturday and claimed that it was to blame for thousands of deaths worldwide.
Thakur was speaking at the Youth 20 (Y20) consultation meeting organised at a private university in Pune city. Y20 is a formal platform for a consultation where young people from all G20 members can speak with one another.
Talking about mental health issues, Thakur said, “More than a pandemic, it was an infodemic because of the spread of lies and misinformation. And it led to the loss of thousands and thousands of lives across the world.”
The term “infodemic” is a combination of the words “information” and “pandemic” or “epidemic”. “At times, we have to see whether technology is an enabler or not,” the Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Youth Affairs and Sports said.
“Today, India decides the position of its national interest. It speaks with eye-to-eye contact and negotiates from position of strength. India no longer looks down or raises its eyebrows, but ensures eye-to-eye contact during any dialogue, no matter which country is involved in talks. This New India is getting better and better,” he concluded.