As Twitter and Facebook fail to comply with the new social media rules issued by the government of India, a Twitter account posing as that of news agency ANI, posted a Tweet informing that “Twitter would stop operations in India w.e.f 26th May, 00.00 hrs. It furthered that the use of VPN, third party API will be treated like criminal offence”.
The fake Twitter account, lamenting the persecution of Twitter by the central government freaked out the gang of the ‘secular liberals’, who hurriedly started sharing and retweeting the post to express their despondency against the Modi government. However, these bunch of ‘intellectuals’, in their haste, forgot to do the basic verification before sharing the post.
Newslaundry CEO Abhinandan Sekhri shared the post lamenting that this was India’s step 3 to going the way of Iran under Khomeni or Afghanistan under the Talibanis. Sekhri rebuked ANI for justifying and applauding the arbitrary step taken by the government of India. “The usual media monkeys still justifying and applauding?”, questioned the flabbergasted Sekhri.
Apparently ‘Vishwaguru’ seems to be the latest toolkit keyword to be used by Modi haters.
‘Investigative journalist‘ masquerading as abusive troll Swati Chaturvedi also shared and responded to the post, congratulating the Modi Government for “officially turning India into a banana republic”.
Going by the trend, an ardent TMC supporter, Agnivo Niyogi, also jumped on to the bandwagon.
Amusingly, in their haste to belittle the Modi Government, these ‘well-read intellectuals’ forgot to verify the authenticity of the Twitter account before sharing the post.
The account from which the information regarding Twitter stopping its operation in India was posted went by the username, @ANINewslndia where they had used ‘l’ in place of capital I. News Agency ANI, on the other hand, goes by the username, @ANI. Moreover, the official account of ANI is a verified account with a blue tick on its portfolio, while this fake account, which has now been deleted, did not have a blue tick.
After social media users pointed out how these ‘journalists’ had fallen for a fake account, Newslaundry CEO Abhinandan Sekhri retracted his Tweet. He wrote in a subsequent Tweet: “Tweet deleted, premature, its not going anywhere…. yet!!!” Sekhri seemed relieved that Twitter is here to stay in India.
Tweet deleted, premature, its not going anywhere…. yet!!!— Abhinandan Sekhri (@AbhinandanSekhr) May 25, 2021
People like Swati quietly deleted without acknowledging that they fell for a fake account.
The parody account has since been deleted.
Govt slams Twitter after platform tags Congress toolkit tweet as ‘manipulative media’
The war of words between Twitter and GOI began after Twitter added the ‘manipulated media’ tag to a tweet by BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra a day after Congress wrote a letter to Twitter asking to permanently suspend the accounts of BJP leaders for allegedly “spreading misinformation” regarding the Congress toolkit.
In his tweets, Patra had accused the Congress party of carrying out PR exercise with the help of “Friendly Journalists” and “Influencers”. Twitter, acted arbitrarily on the demands of Congress, without revealing on what basis it concluded that the ‘toolkit’ tweet of the BJP leader was manipulative. After flagging the tweet, Twitter claimed that the tweets had violated its “Synthetic and manipulated media policy”.
The Government of India had raised objection to the labeling of the tweets. Ministry sources had said, “In its communication to Twitter, the Ministry has stated that a complaint has already been made by one of the concerned parties before local law enforcement agency questioning the veracity of the toolkit and the same is under investigation.” Sources said that Twitter has taken an arbitrary and unilateral decision regarding the matter.