Centre launches WhatsApp chatbot to create awareness about COVID-19

New Delhi [India], Mar 21 (ANI): The Government of India on Saturday launched a new chatbot on WhatsApp -- MyGov Corona Helpdesk -- to create awareness about coronavirus pandemic that has infected nearly 300 people across the country.

This chatbot will help address all the queries about COVID-19 outbreak and is developed and implemented by Jio Haptik Technologies Limited, one of the world's largest conversational AI platforms and a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).

One can access the chatbot by sending a WhatsApp message to the number +91 9013151515. The idea is to have the right information at the touch of a button while preventing the spread of this pandemic across the country by following basic hygiene practices.

This chatbot has been developed by Jio Haptik for free of cost, and updated in real-time, as per instructions from NeGD and MyGov, both under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

The real-time updates will curb the circulation of false information that can cause mass hysteria while educating the population about the present scenario.

Equipped with verified data from the Ministry of Health, the chatbot will address FAQs pertaining to the infection. This includes necessary precautionary measures, symptoms, correct and incorrect facts, helpline numbers, affected cases in the region, government advisories including travel, and informational videos.

Appreciating the move, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that citizens in the country can text a WhatsApp bot -- called MyGov Corona Helpdesk -- to get instant authoritative answers to their coronavirus queries such as the symptoms of the viral disease and how they could seek help.

"Sharing correct information, avoiding incorrect panic. Here is an effort by WhatsApp and @mygovindia to ensure you receive accurately and verified information on Coronavirus. Please click on this link https://wa.me/919013151515?text=Hi ... or send Hi on +919013151515. #IndiaFightsCorona," he tweeted. (ANI)