If you’re one of the 2.38-lakh people who liked the Meera Mochi video on Facebook, here’s something to disappoint you. The video is a hoax.
The video shows the story of a cobbler’s daughter who fought all odds to get into an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), and subsequently bagged a job at Amazon. However, there’s no such girl. The girl shown in the video is actually Varsha Jawalgekar. MiD DAY has learnt that she has been at Bailley Road, Patna for the last 12 years.
Varsha has never set foot in an IIT. “I would like to clarify that the picture is mine, but I am not Meera. The man in the picture is not my father. I’m a social activist and a community journalist,” said the 34-year-old Varsha. Varsha originally hails from Latur district in Maharashtra. The daughter of a bank employee, she went to school in Goregaon and later, completed her post-graduation in English literature from Pune University.
She is the founder secretary of Parivartan Kendra, a women’s help group that fights for women’s rights, including right to life with dignity. She also contributes as a community reporter -- covering the plight of women in Bihar for IndiaUnheard, a web portal.
“I initially took it as a joke. But then I realised it was suppressing my own identity, which was not acceptable to me,” she added.
Net experts say
Vijay Mukhi, IT expert said, “On social media (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube etc) a sucker is born every nanosecond. People forward such posts to their friends, without verifying the contents.” He says the person whose identity has been stolen on a social network should immediately register a complaint with cyber cell of the police.
According to section 66 (C) of Information Technology (Amended) Act, 2008 and section 419 of IPC, identity theft is a cognisable offence. The accused responsible can be imprisoned for a term of three years, or be fined up to Rs 1 lakh, or both.
Varsha though hasn’t lodged a complaint with the cyber police. She has requested her friends to blog about the reality and share the link on Facebook.