Skip to main content

Reasons I decided to install and uninstall the nationalist Koo... nothing ideological

By Rajiv Shah 
The “nationalist” Koo fever appears to have caught up with some Union ministers, BJP politicians, some right-wing actors, media and professionals. I too decided to try it out by downloading what is tom-tommed as a Twitter alternative on my mobile phone, thinking, perhaps it would give a little insight into right-wing news stories, which interest me.
Immediately after downloading Koo, I found that I am being invited to “follow” Union ministers, BJP politicians, a few actors and topcops who have become famous for their closeness to powers that be. But that was expected. I decided not to follow any of them, as I knew what they would be saying. So, I looked up if any news media or journalists are there, whom I could follow.
Yes, a few news media were there. I decided to follow Republic TV. I also clicked on the “follow” button for News 18 and CNBC TV-18. There were three or four others in Koo’s “offer” list – frankly I couldn’t recognise any of them, hence decided not to follow them. Then I looked at the journalists’ list – the only worth, and known, person following Koo seemed to be Ashutosh, who was formerly with Aam Aadmi Party. I couldn’t identify others.
I decided to look at the list of those who have joined Koo. Among well-known actors, as of today, the only top one I could identify was Anupam Kher (even Kangana Ranavat wasn’t there). As for others, they may be great, but I couldn’t recognise them, call it my poor Bollywood general knowledge.
Among ministers and politicians, the names appeared were only of BJP persons – Union minister Piyush Goyal, Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, loud mouthed Sambit Patra, Amit Malaviya (the BJP IT cell man whose fake tweets are by now a legend), and Shejad Poonwalla (who calls himself proud Indian Muslim by faith, Hindu by culture, Indian by ideology). Others “worth mentioning” are Poonam Mahajan, SG Suryah, Giriraj Singh…
I installed Koo on my Samsung mobile phone, which was released in June 2017 – not a good one from today’s standards, but for my use it is good enough. I installed Koo app by “offering” my mobile number (I had to, unlike Twitter, where either phone number or email id is enough). I one-time password was immediately recognised and I was on Koo.
While I was browsing through Koo, I found a few major issues, all of them technical: One, that my mobile got heated up for unknown reasons; Koo crashed thrice, and though I was not “pushed out” of the app, when I tried to get out, I just couldn’t – I had to “close all” option to get out!
So, what is the moral of the story? Technically, nothing wrong in installing Koo, provided you have a phone that permits it, it doesn’t get hot (no double meaning here!), the app doesn’t crash, and you can easily move out of the app without using the “close all” function. I am not such a big nationalist, hence I was not much concerned about whether the app had a Chinese investor.
Nor am I much concerned with its “insecure” factors, about which some experts have reportedly drawn attention to. So, install it, if you want to follow and see what not-so-top ranking politicians, or an avowedly extreme right-wing media (Republic TV) have to say.
Two hours after installing the app, I decided to uninstall it. Reason? As I said, my mobile would unusually heat up. The app would crash. It stopped heating up after I uninstalled it. Nor – as I have said – am I such a big nationalist that I should promote the app just because it supposedly an Indian startup. Capitalists, American or Indian, talk of being “nationalist” because that suits their economic interests. I wouldn’t mind using an app, whether Indian or foreign, even Chinese, if it works well and serves my purpose.
The developers of the app say they are “proud” Indians; maybe, but that surely doesn’t impress me. Let them first ensure that top Indians, ranging from Prashan Bhushan, a known Modi critic, to top Modi supporting academics supporting Modi (Arvind Panagariya or Sujit Bhalla, who are on Twitter), join in to provide some facade of objectivity; lest it would be seen as a right-wing (extreme?) app.
Post-script: I would have liked to continue with controversial Koo – dubbed nationalist – had the developers allowed me to do at least on my computer, as Twitter does… But they don’t seem to have be allowing that. So, let’s hope for the best, and good luck and sorry to Koo developers!

Comments

TRENDING

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

World Bank proved right, Narmada is already a destructive project: Medha Patkar

By Rajiv Shah  Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar has said that the World Bank’s independent review mission, which brought out the Morse Commission report , has been proved right: The Sardar Sarovar dam has not only failed to live up to the loud promises made for irrigating large arid areas of Saurashtra and Kutch in Gujarat, those who were displaced and resettled in Gujarat are getting increasingly restive as many of them are unable to get the promised water for irrigation and some for drinking water too. While 50,000 families have been resettled in three states and 20,000 have received land rights as land or cash, the authorities have not calculated what should be done with 15,000 families, whose houses are acquired for Sardar Sarovar but following changing backwater levels of the Sardar Sarovar dam, they are denied rehabilitation, Patkar tells Counterview in an interview (part1*): *** Q: What is the latest position in your view as far as the Sardar Sarovar dam is concerned?

Upholding labour rights, Nehruvian scientific temper, Rajni Patel opposed Emergency

By Harsh Thakor*  Rajni Patel, who died 40 years ago, whatever his flaws, had one great quality: his human touch to offer selfless service and ability to galvanise or influence human beings from all walks of life. Few people would ever go out of the way to help someone or serve as selflessly without aim of personal gain. Rajni championed Nehruvian secular ideas and scientific temper. As a master in public relations he revealed utmost humility. As a barrister, he never appeared against the trade unions or workers. A Fabien Socialist he opposed liberal capitalism and radical socialism. Unlike most lawyers, he did not succumb to the lure of amassing wealth. Rajni was born in Sirsa, in Gujarat, on the very day Gandhi set foot on Indian soil, on 9th January, 1915. He gained his baptism through one of Gandhi's speeches calling for the boycott of foreign goods, which was the virtual turning point of his life. Rajni toed Gandhi to organise boycott of foreign goods. Rajni was able to cros

Vadodara violence: Fine Arts Faculty alumni raise fingers at Varsity's political appointee

Hasmukh Vaghela with PM Counterview Desk  In a statement, alumni of the Faculty of Fine Arts (FoFA), Maharaja Sayajirao University (MSU), Baroda, Gujarat, referring to the “violence” by right-wing groups for displaying “objectionable” paintings that “hurt religious sentiments” at the one of India’s top fine arts institute May 5, have taken strong exception to “the assault and rustication” of one of the students, and lack of action taken against those who “violated” the institution and committed the act. Floated as an online petition seeking wider support, the FoFA alumni, in their statement, addressed to the vice chancellor, MSU, said, there should be “thorough” investigation in the whole incident and “immediate action” should be taken against syndicate member Hasmukh Vaghela, MSU, who sparked the assault, and “other co-conspirators” for breaching “university code of conduct and unlawful activities committed in broad daylight”. While the alumni statement doesn't say so, Vaghela

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

UK leader cites Indian farmers' struggle one of top global fights against neoliberal order

Counterview Desk  Jeremy Corbyn, member of the UK Parliament, former leader of the UK Labour Party and founder of the  Peace and Justice Project , in his  inaugural speech to the  Progressive International’s  Summit at the End of the World on May 12, 2022, has said, what is happening across globe suggests that "image of apocalypse -- bombs and raids, oil spills and wildfires, disease and contagion -- is a reality for people across the planet." In an adaptation of his speech, distributed by  Globetrotter , Corbyn, however, said, there are fresh examples action, too -- by Indian farmers forcing Prime Minister Narendra Modi to withdraw three neo-liberal laws;  by workers, communities and activists against the top giant multinational Amazon's "greed and exploitation"; and by Latin American people's struggle to say "no more to the domination by imperialism, the destruction of their communities and the abuse of their environments." Stating that this is n

Why is NIOH-ICMR 'official' making false claims on silicosis?: Health rights NGO

Counterview Desk In a letter to the Director General, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), New Delhi, Dr Jagdish Parikh, trustee, health rights NGO People’s Training and Research Centre (PTRC), Vadodara, and Jagdish Patel, director, PTRC, have said that the claim being made for the use of biomarker for detection of silicosis raises concern about scientific tenacity of the diagnosis of the deadly occupational disease. The letter also objects to the reported claim by a top health official that it is possible to detect silicosis at the sub-radiological stage. It asks, “What is this subradiological stage of silicosis? We have not heard any such scientific term being used. Again, the report is using a term which is not found in any scientific literature so far. Is this term acceptable by ICMR? Is ICMR thinking of any explanation?” Text : This is with reference to our letter dated November 28, 2021. In our communication we had raised our concern about the scientific tena

Welfare? Govt of India spends just 19% of manual scavengers' rehabilitation budget

By Bharat Dogra*  While the Dalit community has been always known for higher levels of poverty as well as social discrimination, even within the Dalits there is a sub-section known for even worse levels of poverty as well as social discrimination. This is the section which was traditionally involved in manual scavenging. The shocking injustice they have suffered from over the years has been widely recognized leading to a ban on manual scavenging. At the same time there is urgent need for the rehabilitation of those engaged in manual scavenging. Hence a self-employment scheme for the rehabilitation of those engaged in manual scavenging was drawn up. The allocations and the expenditure for this scheme for the last eight years are shown in the Table below: Union Budget for Self-Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of  Manual Scavengers (in Rs crore) By Budget Estimate we mean the original allocation made when the budget is presented. It is clear from this table that the actual expenditure

This Maoist justified US, western Europe's anti-Soviet stance, even Bhindranwale

By Harsh Thakor*  A glaring example of the extent to which those seeking to identify themselves as revolutionaries can go in making odd compromises with those normally considered as “class enemies” in Marxist jargon is late Kondapalli Seetharamiah. Few know that this Maoist organiser two decades ago was so enamoured by the Chinese three worlds theory that he called for a united front with the United States and other western countries against what he considered Soviet social imperialism! This wasn’t the only “compromise” Seetharamiah made during his career as a revolutionary. On Punjab he took a most eclectical stand of supporting Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, thus soft-pedalling the terrorist Khalistani movement. Among his other opportunist alliances, about which few are aware of, include support to the Akalis in Punjab, on one hand, and the NTR Telugu Desam regime in Andhra Pradesh, on the other – all part of his anti-Congress thrust. Also known as KS, this Maoist started his career as

Dalit Hindi professor intimidated, harassed by saffron brigade: 400 activists, academics

Counterview Desk  Over 400 academics and activists have expressed alarm at the Lucknow University ‘protests’ on May 10 against Dr Ravi Kant, associate professor of Hindi and a Dalit, stating it is nothing but “intimidation and abuse” over his remarks on the online channel Satya Hindi, which were taken out of context and made viral on social media. “We are even more concerned that such an incident should occur within the confines a university campus, where free speech and expression without fear must ideally be the norm. Violence and intimidation over differences of opinion should never occur in a university”, the statement regrets, asking the authorities at the university and the Uttar Pradesh government to assure him and his family “protection from further harassment or intimidation.” Text: We are a group of academics and activists deeply concerned by the public heckling and intimidation of Dr. Ravi Kant, Associate Professor of Hindi and well known Dalit scholar, on the premises of t