Christmas lights were reportedly banned in Cardwell in Australia because of complaints from Muslim residents but the story turned out to be part of a hoax.
The prank was started on a Facebook group “Meanwhile in Australia.”
In response, the Cassowary Coast Regional Council, which the prank claimed ordered the ban, were bombarded with emails about the ban.
But the council emphasized on its website that the council “HAS NOT” banned Christmas lights in the town.
“It has gone viral all around the world, I have had phone calls from so many places you wouldn’t believe,” Mayor Bill Shannon told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
“At the Cassowary Coast we put up Christmas lights and have done so for decades and will continue to do so.”
The Facebook post indicated that the local Muslim community including the Al Shalalah Mosque had requested the ban.
“The council said in a statement that the request was approved because the needs of the religious minority need to be respected,” it said.
But there is no such mosque.
In fact, “There are no mosques in the whole of the Cassowary Coast region so I think they have just tried to find somewhere that is somewhat out of the way and create this huge ruckus about it,” Shannon said.
Shannon added that Muslims around the world have called him, asking him to go ahead with Christmas light displays.