A video is going viral on social media platforms, showing people entering an ambulance outside Punjab National Bank’s Loni branch in Ghaziabad. They are ushered in by a person wearing full personal protective gear.
Claim: “लोनी गाजियाबाद मैं पंजाब नेशनल बैंक का पूरा स्टाफ कोरोना पॉजिटिव पाया गया, शराब की लाइन मैं लगकर वर्कर ने ली थी शराब पूरे स्टाफ के लिए”
(Translation: All staff members of Punjab National Bank’s Loni branch in Ghaziabad were found to be corona positive. A staff member had stood in a queue to buy alcohol for the whole staff.)
This post received over 22,000 views and was shared more than 1,300 times on Facebook.
लोनी गाजियाबाद मैं पंजाब नेशनल बैंक का पूरा स्टाफ कोरोना पॉजिटिव पाया गया।
शराब की लाइन मैं लगकर वर्कर ने ली थी शराब पूरे स्टाफ के लिए।
— Dr.Salient(OnSplMission) (@Malaprop15) May 9, 2020
लोनी गाजियाबाद में पंजाब नेशनल बैंक का पूरा स्टाफ कोरोना पॉजिटिव पाया गया!
शराब की लाइन मैं लगकर वर्कर ने ली थी शराब पूरे स्टाफ के लिए!
जिस ठेकों से ये पाॅजिटिव आया पुरे स्टाफ को पाॅजिटिव किया!
वहा से कितने पाॅजिटिव लोग गए होगे और वो कितनों को किए होगे?https://t.co/zp1eV3UA1m
— Rofl_रविश-Parody (@Rofl_RavishNdtv) May 10, 2020
— ابو الیمــان (@Md_Huzaifa_) May 10, 2020
After obtaining keyframes using the video analysis tool InVid, we found that the video was uploaded to social media by user मुख्यमहाप्रबंधक on April 28, 2020.
News is coming that one special assistant at PNB, Loni Ghaziabad branch has been found #CoronaPositive & other 11 staff members have been quarantined at hospital. Contact tracing is on. All bank staffs needs to be tested and govt should stop crowd pulling scheme immediately. pic.twitter.com/5DenpfJQOw
— मुख्यमहाप्रबंधक (@CGMPSB) April 28, 2020
The sale of non-essential items began on May 4 across the country. It would not have been possible for anybody to go and buy liquor from stores on April 28, a week before the new measures allowing liquor to be sold were announced. Therefore, the claim implying that one employee went to buy alcohol for everyone is untrue.
The same tweet also mentions that only one employee tested positive and the rest were quarantined. We carried out keyword searches to assess the truth of the claim and found news reports clarifying the claims.
Loni’s sub-divisional magistrate, Khalid Anjum spoke to The Quint (link) and said that 17 people from the branch were quarantined after four employees, including the branch manager, tested positive for coronavirus. The others tested negative.
Station House Officer Vijendra Bhadana also confirmed Anjum’s statement and added that the was sealed.
Therefore, the claim that all employees of Punjab National Bank’s Loni branch tested positive for coronavirus after one employee stood in a queue to purchase alcohol for the whole staff is false.