Twitter today suspended the ‘bluetick’ verification from Vice President of India M Venkaiah Naidu’s personal Twitter handle on Friday. Several social media users noted on Saturday morning that Twitter has un-verified Vice President’s account by withdrawing the blue verified badge from his personal account.
Twitter’s arbitrary decision to remove the ‘blue tick’ for the Vice President’s account sparked outrage among social media users. Following the outcry, the American social media company issued an explanation saying that the Vice President’s badge was removed from his account due to a long period of inactivity and restored the same.
Though this random decision to remove the blue verified symbol from Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu’s personal Twitter handle sparked a lot of criticism, this is not the first time Twitter has acted on its whim.
Today itself, RSS cheif Mohan Bhagwat became the next target of Twitter’s wrath. His verified badge was revoked on Twitter a short while ago.
Friends of RSS took to Twitter to share the information. Drawing attention towards the arbitrary decision taken by the social media giant, Friends of RSS Tweeted: “Twitter removed the blue tick from the personal Twitter handle of RSS SarSanghchalak @DrMohanBhagwat ji today. @TwitterIndia”.
It is notable here that until a few hours ago, the RSS chief’s account displayed the ‘blue tick’.
Sanjay Dixit, a former bureaucrat, is the next to join the ranks of the microblogging site after his verification credential was also revoked today. The archive version of Sanjay Dixit’s Twitter account shows that his account was verified until December last year.
In March 2021, Twitter arbitrarily removed the verification badge from accounts of 3 RSS functionaries, then too without giving any explanation for their action. The luminaries who lost their ‘blue tick’ were RSS leader Suresh Soni, Arun Kumar, Krishan Gopal.
Before this, these accounts were verified. The archive of Arun Kumar’s Twitter account as of September 1, 2020, shows that his account was verified.
Likewise, the personal Twitter handles of the other 2 RSS functionaries, namely Suresh Soni and Krishan Gopal, which have now lost the ‘blue tick’, were verified when they joined the platform in the year 2019. Twitter user going by the handle @kaushkrahul, had shared the screengrab of all the RSS functionaries who joined Twitter on July 1, 2019, along with RSS chief Mohan Bhagat. The names included all the three RSS leaders who have now lost their blue verified badge. If one looks at the screenshot carefully, one can see ‘blue tick’ in front of the names of these leaders.
Please join me in welcoming Pujaniya Sarsanghchalak of the RSS, @DrMohanBhagwat ji on Twitter. 6 more national level functionaries of the organisation have also joined the platform. pic.twitter.com/ZslKjeDvoM— Rahul Kaushik (@kaushkrahul) July 1, 2019
Though the microblogging site rules specify that it can arbitrarily remove the blue verified badge and verified status of a Twitter account at any time and without notice, Netizens are left to wonder why only the verification badge of these right-wing activists have been revoked, despite there being many leftists who have also remained inactive on the microblogging site for a reasonable amount of time.
Though the American social media company has restored the Vice President’s account, it remains to be seen when the ‘blue tick’ for Sanjay Dixit and these RSS luminaries will be restored.
Since the report was published, Twitter has restored the verified badge of Mohan Bhagwat and other RSS functionaries.