If the world entirely changing during the coronavirus pandemic wasn’t bizarre enough, a man in Uttar Pradesh’s Rampur made some bizarre demands by calling a helpline for COVID-19.
According to the district magistrate of Rampur, Ajani Kumar Singh, a man called the control room set up for the outbreak, asking for four hot samosas.
The district magistrate took to Twitter saying the man who had asked for samosas was punished by making him clean drains. “The person who called the control room making unreasonable demands was made to do social work by cleaning drains,” Singh said in the tweet.
Singh tweeted asking citizens to be responsible and help the administration and stay safe.
Apparently, the Rampur administration has been facing a persistent problem of people calling for random reasons.
Singh told The Indian Express, “One man called up asking us to send him a Pizza. We got a call from a paan shop owner saying he had run out of paan (betel leaf) and that we must send him some. Many others would call and ask us to send cooked food. Pharmacies and grocers would ask us to send supplies. When our volunteers would reach, they would find that there was no actual need, that the persons concerned were simply “testing the system’’.”
Singh said that the administration was also struggling with people willingly flouting norms, coming out on the streets for no reason, as the government struggles to cope with the epidemic. Because of this the administration has begun to fine people Rs 500 for flouting rules and publicly shaming those misusing the helplines.
The Indian Express report said that in the last 5 days the Rampur administration had collected Rs 2 lakhs in fines.
The Rampur administration on March 26 tweeted out eight helpline numbers and two Whatsapp numbers for assistance during the lockdown.