Skip to main content

Startup India? Govt of India's top projects "handled, propagated" on social media by rabid pro-Modi trolls

By Our Representative
Has the Government of India put its key projects at the disposal of rabid, allegedly saffron social media trolls, known to use abusive language at the drop of a hat as and when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is criticized? It would seem so, if what happened over the last 24 hours on Twitter is any guide.
Troll literally meaning ugly cave-dwelling creature depicted as either a giant or a dwarf. Two of the trolls tweeted at two different places: “Indian army should be freed for one day to take care of pro-Pak #Presstitutes to make these #ProPakDovesSilent for eternity” and “Rakhi Sawant is more useful to this nation than Meera Sood”, tagging it to #ProPakDovesSilent.
The latter reference, apparently, is human rights advocate Mihira (not Meera) Sood, who, among many others, had signed a petition requesting the President of India to consider the mercy plea of terrorist Yakub Memon. She was present in a Times Now debate on Tuesday evening, where the hashtag #ProPakDovesSilent was floated.
So sooner the two tweet appeared, those responsible for propagating Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s top project, Startup Project on twitter, retweeted both the tweets, inviting the ire of well-known journalist Rohin Singh (‏@Rohinisgh_ET), senior editor, “Economic Times”, who said, “Shocking that government handle @startupindia is RTing trolls who are advocating violence against journalists!”
Among those who supported Singh was Aam Admi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal, who, even as retweeting the shock expressed by another senior journalist Barkha Dutt of NDTV channel, said through Twitter, “All abuses and violence, whether online or offline, is emanating from topmost BJP leadership.”
Startup India deleted these retweets
Meanwhile, suspicion went wild that @startupindia is being handled by saffron brigade, using abusive language against anyone critical of Modi. Said @truthofgujarat, managed by Gujarat-based rights activist Pratik Sinha, Government of India @startupindia retweeting tweets asking for killing of journos… Bhakt forgot to change ID before retweeting.”
A popular site, janatakareporter.com, commented, “Modi has long been criticised for allegedly encouraging the nasty right-wing Twitter trolls by even following some of them on the microblogging site”, pointing towards how on Tuesday, in late hours, the government’s official Twitter handle @startupindia, retweeted “right-wing trolls.”
Calling Startup India a Modi brainchild, floated in January launched amidst much fanfare primarily to encourage entrepreneurship in the country, the site says, “The initiative is yet to deliver any tangible results, but it seems the official Twitter handle has been put to use to further the right-wing agenda of the ruling party.”
It adds, “Journalist Rohini Singh first posted the following tweet expressing her shock and horror on a central government’s official Twitter handle retweeting a political message posted by a troll.” In fact, @startupindia agreed with the comment which said that the Indian army should be “freed for one day” from “pro-Pakistani presstitutes”.
It continues, “#ProPakDovesSilent was the hashtag promoted by Times Now news channel while debating Kashmir unrest on Tuesday night. It was during this debate that a panelist had allegedly termed Indian army as rapist prompting right-wing users to post angry tweets.”
Finding things going out of hand, Startup India “corrected” its mistakes and removed the controversial tweets from its timeline. But the issue had already snowballed into a full-blown controversy, as social media users woke up to this development on Wednesday morning.

Comments

TRENDING

India under Modi among top 10 autocratizing nations, on verge of 'losing' democracy status

By Rajiv Shah
A new report, prepared by a top Swedish institute studying liberal democracy, has observed that there has been a sharp “dive in press freedom along with increasing repression of civil society in India associated with the current Hindu-nationalist regime of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.” The report places India among the top 10 countries that “have autocratized the most”. Other countries that have been identified for rolling towards autocracy are -- Hungary, Turkey, Poland, Serbia, Brazil, Mali, Thailand, Nicaragua and Zambia.

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam*
RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Border conflict? RBI nod India's 'brotherly' help to China internationalise its currency

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*
In the middle of a global pandemic, China started an unprovoked border conflict with India. It unraveled trust deficit and ties between the two neighbours. As thousands of Chinese troops tried occupying Indian territory, the Narendra Modi-led BJP government directs the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to allow the Bank of China to start regular banking services in India. The Bank of China will now operate in India like any other commercial banks.

RSS supremo Deoras 'supported' Emergency, but Indira, Sanjay Gandhi 'didn't respond'

By Shamsul Islam*
National Emergency was imposed on the country by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on June 25-26, 1975, and it lasted for 19 months. This period is considered as ''dark times' for Indian democratic polity. Indira Gandhi claimed that due to Jaiprakash Narayan's call to the armed forces to disobey the 'illegal' orders of Congress rulers had created a situation of anarchy and there was danger to the existence of Indian Republic so there was no alternative but to impose Emergency under article 352 of the Constitution.

Letter to friends, mentors: Coming together of class, communal, corona viruses 'scary'

By Prof (Dr) Mansee Bal Bhargava*
COVID greetings from Ahmedabad to dear mentors and friends from around the world…
I hope you are keeping well and taking care of yourself besides caring for the people around you. I’m writing to learn how is the science and the society coping with the prevention and cure of the pandemic. I’m also writing to share the state of the corona virus that is further complicated with the long-standing class and communal viruses.

Clean chit to British rulers, Muslim League? Karnataka to have Veer Savarkar flyovers

By Shamsul Islam*
The BJP government of Karnataka led by BS Yediyurappa is going to honour Hindutva icon VD Savarkar by naming two of the newly built major flyovers in Bangalore and Mangalore after him. There was a huge uproar against this decision of the RSS-BJP government as many pro-Kannada organisations with opposition parties and liberal-secular organizations questioned the logic to ignore so many freedom fighters, social reformers and others from within the state.

Hurried nod to Western Ghat projects: 16 lakh Goans' water security 'jeopardised'

Counterview Desk
Taking strong exception to "virtual clearances" to eco-sensitive projects in the Western Ghats, the National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) in a statement has said urged for a review of the four-lane highway, 400 KV transmission line and double tracking of the railway line through the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary and Mollem National Park in Goa.

Disturbing signal? Reliance 'shifting focus' away from Indian petrochemical sector

By NS Venkataraman*
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), a large Indian company, has expanded and grown in a spectacular manner during the last few decades, like of which no industrial group in India has performed before. RIL is now involved in multi various activities relating to petroleum refineries, petrochemicals, oil and gas exploration, coal bed methane, life sciences, retail business, communication network, (Jio platform) media/entertainment etc.

Case for nationalising India's healthcare system amidst 'strong' private control

Counterview Desk
A draft discussion note, prepared by Dr Maya Valecha, a Gujarat-based gynecologist and activist, sent to the People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) as also a large number of activists, academics and professionals as an email alert, is all set to create a flutter among policy experts for its strong insistence on nationalizing India’s healthcare system.