An image of a woman is going viral on Facebook and Twitter, who is said to be Dr Megha Vyas from Pune.
Claim: Dr Megha Vyas from Pune contracted coronavirus after serving COVID-19 positive patients and passed away.
The post has been widely shared in English, Marathi as well as Hindi.
(Translation: Heartfelt homage to Dr Megha Vyas, who contracted coronavirus after treating corona positive patients and passed away. Sister, we salute your patriotism.)
— Anjana (@AnjanaPed) April 24, 2020
Neither was she a doctor, nor was she a victim of Corona
The woman in the image is not Dr Megha Vyas. Her name is Mrs Megha Shrikant Sharma and she was a housewife in Pune. Her husband, Dr Shrikant Sharma was contacted by fact-checking website Fact Crescendo’s Marathi wing (article here). He told them that his wife was not a doctor and did not die from coronavirus. He has made this statement through comments on Facebook under multiple posts spreading this false information.
Dr Sharma further established his claims as factual when he shared Jehangir Hospital’s (Pune) note stating the name, date and cause of death of his wife, where she was admitted.
The note states her name as Mrs Megha Shrikant Sharma and the cause of death as urosepsis (an infection of the urinary tract) and community-acquired pneumonia. It also explicitly mentions that she was tested negative for COVID-19.
Another news outlet, Sakaal, uploaded an explanatory video to Facebook under their fact-checking initiative #FactsWithSakal and explained in detail as to what the real context is. The video corresponds with the hospital’s note and says that Megha Sharma was admitted to a speciality hospital on 22nd April after a sudden bout of heart disease, where she passed away. Megha is survived by her husband and their eight-year-old son.
Dr Sharma said that the image of his wife going viral with false context has caused mental trauma for their family.
Translation (of the paragraph): Dr Shrikant has said that he will file a complaint with the cyber police regarding Megha’s photograph being used with fake context. “People are misusing my wife’s image and spreading false information. I will file complaints with the police against whoever does this now. Please do not share fake posts.”)
The image being shared is therefore fake. She is not Dr Megha Vyas, she is Megha Sharma. She did not die of coronavirus.