Fake News Case Files #3 -Breaking Barriers
The NUT-T admin building was surrounded by protesters and press, it was a chaotic scene. The members of U-(g)Rad Dal had taken it upon themselves to religiously protest for the cows’ welfare.
The slogans “Justice for cows” and “Moo Cowrona, Cowrona Moo” could be heard all around the campus. With the campus gates locked, the mob outside had begun scaling the compound walls of the campus, which has left the students questioning the safety precautions taken by the institution to protect them.
“There has been a shocking development in the cowrona case. It is rumoured that the vaccine turns cows into elephants. Is it just a rumour or is it a clever plot by the NUT-T admin to gain more funds by selling ivory? Tune in to LGTV at 6 PM today to find out.”
Dr Kanakasabapathy and his minions were observing the mayhem from inside the building. All their findings about the virus, including the formula of a possible cure were stolen from the CHEM69 lab. Unable to retrieve their work, they adopted various courses of action to reduce the spread of Cowrona, but to no avail. Their very first idea of collecting funds from the students of NUT-T for making custom masks for the affected cows to prevent transmission of the virus had failed miserably. In haste, they had forgotten to realise that those vicious infected cows would rather eat the hands off anyone who dared near them rather than wear masks. The cows seemed particularly agitated by the idea of wearing masks as it disturbed rumination cycles.
“Stop trying to make the poor cows wear masks. Before you know it, they’ll force us to wear one of those wretched things as well. This is all a conspiracy. Gill Hates wants to implant microchips into our bodies through a vaccine and this is just a test trial carried out on cows and the institute admin is in on this. There is no Cowrona. It’s all a hoax by the government to see how far they can control us.” Says an anti-mask, anti-vaccine and conspiracy theorist who requested anonymity.
Kanakasabapathy was fed up with the protestors and mob. There was a way to put an end to everyone’s suffering, their only problem was that it was not easy.
“Sir maybe we could do what she asks us. If she acts upon her threat and reveals that it was your team that invented the virus, things could get ugly.” Miss Thurman suggested for the umpteenth time.
Kanakasabapathy let an audible sigh and replied “Yes Madam. We could do that. But let us keep that as our last resort. Frankly, I’d rather give all my students full marks in the endsems rather than conceding to her demands. I mean, how can she honestly expect anyone to do all that?”
Meanwhile, a new strain of the virus had reached Ultramarine and thus the roads from the rest of the campus to Ultramarine were blocked. The angry cows lashed out by breaking into the student hostels and stealing the student’s snacks and generously providing a lifetime’s supply of manure and air fragrance to the whole hostel. Mess halls and food courts had to be barricaded and heavily protected at all times. To show gratitude to the front line warriors who were facing a risk of being run over by angry mutant cows for the sake of students, everyone present inside the campus was requested to clap their hands and make some noise. The grateful students, eager to show their appreciation, took their misery and frustration out on the mess cutlery by using them as crash cymbals, eventually breaking them and the admin had to buy new vessels for all the mess halls.
“When will we get our normal life back? Oh how I miss the good old days when those cute, harmless cows used to chase us all around the campus, breaking our bones and delaying our schedule! Once life gets back to being normal, I swear I won’t take cows for granted ever again.” said Madasamy, a resident of Ultramarine, feeling nostalgic about the life before Cowrona.
As the days passed, Dr Kanakasabapathy grew more and more desperate to put an end to the virus. He tried tracing the writer of the mysterious letter by their name, he even had a handwriting analyst compare it to check if it matched with any student, but his efforts were to no avail. He finally accepted defeat and decided to concede to all of the ridiculous demands of the mysterious thief. He took out the letter that was left on the break-in site and glared at it for the 1000th time since the break-in.
My list of demands
Greetings dear scientists!
I just want to say that I am a big fan of your work. I mean, not everyone can invent a new virus and a cure for it. Imagine the popularity and fame you and your institution would get if all of your top-secret research findings are uploaded on social media. Well, if you don’t want that to happen, accept my (very reasonable) demands mentioned in the list attached.
- Supply protective gear against aviary feces attack.
- Install bright, intense lights near all the stone benches. Those lovebirds flex too much and no-one should be allowed to be that happy.
- Replace the E-rickshaw with a hot air balloon service, free of charge of course.
- Allow students to wear 3/4ths and shorts inside Octa and the library.
- Starting from the 25th of this month, declare institute holiday for one week.
- During this one week vacation, good quality pizza free of cost, should be served at every mess.
- For the love of God, stop giving assignments that are more than 20 pages long.
You have to fulfill these by the 20th of this month. Else, let’s just say that there are some people at TITS who would be more than interested to know about your secret research for a good price. But if you abide by this list, I promise that all of your research will be back at CHEM69 without a single scratch. Pinky swear!
Loads of love
The Vimala Satish
Once Kanakasabapathy set out to work, everything happened smoothly, he somehow managed to convince the higher-ups that the students had to be under quarantine for a week (even though the virus only affected cows) and had to pay for the pizza out of his own wallet. He also managed to meet the other requirements, after a great deal of hard work, persuasion and a teeny bit of blatant lying. To his huge relief, he found that all the documents were safely returned to the CHEM69 lab after the week was over. Everything returned to normal, well, about as normal as life can be at NUT-T.
The news of the mysterious whistle-blower, The Vimala Satish spread through the campus like wildfire. Students showed their gratitude in various ways, fest events were named after her, her name was printed on t-shirts and some even built a shrine. Even the regular visitors of the stone benches couldn’t stay mad at Vimala for long. Legend says that, till this day, if any NUT-T student prayed to The Vimala Satish about their problems, all their sufferings would be resolved and they could achieve peace of mind, sometimes even enlightenment to drop out of college and pursue their dream.
Meanwhile, the computer number 420 in Octa contains a secret about Vimala Satish’s true identity. At times, the screensaver displays the name:
The Vimala Satish
Then the letters would rearrange to form:
I am Stealth Shiva.