Amitabh Bachchan is the host of the gameshow Kaun Banega Crorepati.
The 2016 rumour about Rs 2,000 notes being embedded with GPS trackers has become the focal point in a promotional video for the new season of the popular gameshow Kaun Banega Crorepati. In an attempt to encourage fact-checking, Amitabh Bachchan tells viewers that while they should absorb information from wherever they can, they must verify it first.
The video is set in the familiar Kaun Banega Crorepati set-up, with a contestant sitting opposite show-host, Amitabh Bachchan. As per the show format, Mr Bachchan asks her a question, "Which of these has GPS technology? The options are a typewriter, television, satellite and a Rs 2,000 note."
The contestant smiles and confidently chooses the last option, which is the Rs 2,000 note. When asked if she is sure about her answer, she said, "Not just me sir, the entire country is sure about that answer."
Mr Bachchan tells her that her answer is incorrect, and that the correct answer was a satellite. Laughing, the contestant asks him if he is joking and he said, "Why would I joke about this? The joke was what you believed to be true."
The contestant tries to defend herself by saying that it was the news that gave her this information, about the notes having GPS chips in them, so the fault lies with them.
Amitabh Bachchan tells the contestant that although the media bore the fault of carrying the misinformation, the consequences of believing the fake news have had a direct impact on her, as she lost the game in the scenario.
In 2016, there were some news reports that carried misinformation about "state of the art nanotechnology GPS chips" being put in every "high security" Rs 2,000 note to put an end to the issue of black money in the country.
When asked a day after the Centre demonitsed Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes, whether the Rs 2,000 currency note had a chip to enable its satellite tracking, then Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, "From where did you come to know this? I haven't heard of it."
The rumours on social media claimed that the currency note carried a chip that made it detectable when a pile was kept together, and it could also be tracked via satellite.
The importance of tackling misinformation in India, which was regarded as the top source for covid misinformation globally last year, as encouraged in the promotional video was received well online and has received over 6,000 likes on Twitter.