On Sunday, the official Twitter handle of Lenskart, India’s leading eyewear business company, put out a controversial tweet in reply to Prajwal Busta, Member of Himachal Pradesh State Planning Board, who questioned the doublespeak of Shaheen Bagh protestors.
She had highlighted how those who refused to show documents were willingly displaying their Voter IDs while standing in queues outside polling booths.
— Prajwal Busta (@PrajwalBusta) February 8, 2020
In defence of the Shaheen Bagh protestors, Lenskart tweeted, “These documents are not of 1950, Miss Prajwal.”
The “reference to 1950” was a jibe at the National Register of Citizens (NRC) process that was first conducted in Assam in 1951. This anti-NRC tweet irked several Twitter users who called out the company for its tweet.
It may be noted that Prajwal Busta didn’t tag LensKart or any other handle in the tweet, she had only included few hashtags in the tweet, along with a photograph of voters in front of a polling booth. Still the official Twitter handle of LensKart chose to respond to the tweet with a controversial tweet.
Journalist Kanchan Gupta accused the company of deliberate misinterpretation of the Citizenship Amendment Act that has fuelled protests in Shaheen Bagh. He suggested his followers to avoid using the company’s glasses.
Nobody has ever asked for 1950 documents.
Malicious, malintentioned misrepresentation apart, this @Lenskart_com tweet is self-admission why their glasses are best avoided: If you use Lenskart lenses you will either read #CAA upside down or you will just see a haze of letters. pic.twitter.com/nB8rh2cOPT
— Kanchan Gupta (@KanchanGupta) February 9, 2020
A user who goes by the handle, @Jal_Kukdi, took a jibe at Lenskart and suggested that they themselves need better quality spectacles to avoid misreading things.
— Dr. Jal Kukdi (@Jal_Kukdi) February 9, 2020
Miffed by the contentious tweet, a Twitter user (@sanjeevpathak2) dropped his plans to buy a new set of spectacles from the company.
— Pathak ji (@sanjeevpathak2) February 9, 2020
Another Twitter user (@Chandan_tndn) wrote that companies such as Ola and Snapdeal can now sympathise with Lenkskart for being at the epicenter of social media backlash.
Meanwhile Snapdeal and Ola to You : pic.twitter.com/s6t0eaOlMs
— Chandan Tandon ?? (@Chandan_tndn) February 9, 2020
This is not the first time that such a prominent establishment has come under the scanner for controversial tweets. Earlier, an Islamist by the name of Khurshid Zenia tweeted in support of the rioters in Jamia Millia Islamia from the official Twitter handle of the Press Information Bureau (PIB).