Social media websites are awash with a new toolkit, allegedly created by the Congress party, detailing its plan to extract political mileage out of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis in the country.
In their pursuit to mount an attack against the BJP and PM Modi, the Congress leaders collaborated with local leaders to block beds and other facilities in some ‘friendly’ hospitals, which were to be made available only on their request, the alleged toolkit said.
“Liaise with local ground level political leaders in cities to keep some beds and other facilities blocked in friendly hospitals, to be released only on our request,” one of the subheadings under “Amplify work of frontal Congress organisations,” said.
The recommendation to block beds in hospitals comes at a time when India is reeling under the second wave of the coronavirus outbreak that has left hospitals packed to capacity and patients struggling to get care. Hospital beds have been scarce, and other facilities such as ventilators, availability of key antiviral drugs such as remdesivir, oxygen cylinders, have also been in short supply, owing to the rising number of cases.
However, in their bid to project the BJP as incompetent, the toolkit suggests Congress leaders block beds in hospitals and hoard off essential supplies so that the party can slyly take credit and achieve positive social media coverage by later releasing it to the patients in urgent need of beds and other key supplies.
The toolkit also instructs India Youth Congress and other frontal Congress organisations to exaggerate their help while understating the work done by the BJP and its frontal organisations.
The toolkit said that request from journalists, media professionals and other influencers must get priority, which clearly reveals the party’s own priority of seeking positive media coverage instead of focusing on helping people in need.
The toolkit also suggests measures to destroy the image of PM Modi, which it claims is still high despite the COVID-19 crisis. It has directed Congress leaders to call the latest mutant virus as the Indian strain and to use ‘Modi Strain’ on social media to tarnish the image of PM Modi.
Congress toolkit suggests maligning Kumbh Mela while asking its followers to refrain from commenting on Eid gatherings
In another instance in the document that is titled ‘Cornering Narendra Modi & Covid Mismanagement’, the toolkit highlights how the ‘Kumbh Mela is to be used to malign the Hindu festival and the ruling party. It also recommends politicizing the congregation by repeatedly labelling it as a ‘super spreader’ to hint at BJP’s Hindu politics.
The pointed instruction guide then recommends using international media reports to validate the point and warns to not comment on ‘Eid’ gatherings as it might be used as a trap.
OpIndia could not independently verify the authenticity of the toolkit.