Tuesday Apr 21, 2020
KARACHI: The latest case of what has come to be known as a "software update" is a man from the metropolis who made far-fetched claims of security and hospital officials labeling every person dying these days as a coronavirus patient and charging hefty sums to discharge bodies.
A "software update", according to Internet lingo, is when someone who makes irresponsible comments rescinds their claim later in another video.
When told that he was being filmed and that his comments would be run on the media, the man from Karachi says: "In this corona [virus] 'scene', it has become very difficult for people to even die.
"Whenever there's a casualty, the hospital administration declares [the deceased as] a corona patient, seizes the body, and then they bury it at an undisclosed location. The same happened in our family as well.
"A cousin died due to liver cancer. He was being treated [for cancer] for the past 15 years and the records for all 15 years are available. When he died, the hospital packed his body in shopping bags and refused to let us go near it.
"After that, we had to take his body against Rs100,000. We did this in Mamji Hospital [in F.B. Area in Karachi's Gulberg Town]," the man claims, smiling, in the video that has since gone viral.
Responding to whether police asked him for any bribes, the bespectacled man, eyes wide with surprise, goes on to say: "Yes, police took Rs20,000 from us [as a bribe] to give approval for his funeral prayers. The imam was not ready to lead the funeral prayers, so they were offered at 11:30pm at night."
When inquired if the graveyard management charge for the burial, he mentions that the "cemetery took Rs100,000 from us for arranging a grave".
"He didn't have corona [virus] or anything, he was just a cancer patient," he adds in the video.
To a question on whether he had any demands from the inspector-general of police (IG) for Sindh or the government, he states: "I just request that they should stop harassing the common people."
He then speaks about a conspiracy theory, claiming confidently that "this corona 'scene'" is fake.
"The World Health Organization (WHO) has cleared that Pakistan has no cases of coronavirus. So they [the government] are harassing the common people so that they can get [foreign] funding.
"You know what? Add poison to the dams so that everyone dies in one go," he adds sarcastically.
Later, in another video shot inside a house, he is seen offering an apology for all his claims, adding that he only said what he said to help raise a poor family's voice.
"[In] a video that went viral day before yesterday, I had tried to cooperate with a poor family and raise my voice for them. But when I asked them for proof, they did not give me any evidence, which is why whatever I said has become baseless and false.
"So I will request everyone who made that video viral to stop that video from going viral and accept my excuse.
"And as a good citizen, please give me an opportunity for this excuse and forgive me," he adds.