Filmmaker Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri has deactivated his Twitter account after he was shadow-banned by Twitter and received death threats and vulgar calls to stop the release of his upcoming movie, ‘The Kashmir Files’. The movie depicts the plight of Kashmiri Pandit refugees following the 1990 Kashmiri Pandit exodus from the valley.
The filmmaker penned an open letter explaining the ordeal he has gone through since he started the campaign #TheKashmirFiles on the microblogging site to promote his upcoming movie. He explained how he and his family are being continuously hounded by what seems to be “Pakistani and Chinese bots” for making an “honest film on the pain and sufferings of our Kashmiri brothers and sisters.”
He wrote, “A lot of people are wondering if my Twitter account is suspended. No, it’s not. I have deactivated it. Here is why: Since I started the campaign of #TheKashmirFiles, Twitter shadowbanned me. My followers dropped drastically and most of my followers couldn’t see any of my tweets. On top of that, my DM was filled with vulgar and threatening messages (by you know who). It’s not that I can’t handle such elements, but it seemed there were many Pakistani & Chinese bots. However tough you may be, it’s mentally testing to be surrounded by such intense hate and threats for your family. For what? Making an honest film on the pain and sufferings of our Kashmiri brothers & sisters? Is that why they are rattled that the truth may come out? The ugly world of social media has given the power to a lot of evil elements. And our silence gives them hope to succeed. TheKashmirFiles breaks that silence. Loud and clear.”
The filmmaker further added, “I have always spoken against India’s enemies. #The KashmirFiles is an attempt to expose inhuman terrorism that has destroyed India’s most sacred land of Shiva & Saraswati. And now religious terrorism is making inroads in mainland India. That’s why they want people to like me silenced. I always speak for those who can’t be heard. I have been exposing many untruths and fake narratives by anti-India Urban Naxals. They want to silence me. But I know very well that silence helps tragic events like Kashmir Genocide. They must know that I can’t be silenced. I thank all my followers and fans for your love and support. Love. Always.”
Twitter suspensions and shadow-banning
Twitter, the social media juggernaut known for its liberal bias, has been often chastised for arbitrarily suspending or shadow-banning accounts of those who don’t share its political ideologies. Last year, on the 15th of December, journalist Aarti Tikoo, a Kashmiri Pandit herself, took to Twitter to raise alarm about Islamic terrorists from Kashmir issuing death threats to her brother. Two days later, on the 17th of December, Twitter India, the social media giant, decided to “lock” Aarti Tikoo’s account. The notice that Aarti got said that she could “unlock” her account if she deleted the tweet about her brother getting threats.
In 2020, Twitter allegedly shadow-banned Kashmir-based Indian Army’s Chinar Corp’s account for unclear reasons. It has been alleged that the shadow-ban was imposed after the account posted details of a rescue operation in Jammu and Kashmir.
Vivek Agnihotri details the plight of Kashmiri Hindus when insurgency began in the valley in his upcoming movie The Kashmir Files
‘The Kashmir Files,’ hailed as one of the most important, current, and untold stories in Indian history was invited by various major institutes and organisations in the United States for over 30 power-packed screenings and garnered a resounding reaction.
In what can only be described as a source of national pride, Vivek Agnihotri’s The Kashmir Files, which is based on the true events of the exodus of Kashmiri Hindus in Jammu and Kashmir, was held high at the Times Square in New York for two continuous days citing the occasion of 73rd Republic Day.
‘The Kashmir Files,’ written and directed by Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri, is based on video interviews with first-generation victims of the Kashmir Genocide of the Kashmiri Pandit Community.
The movie reportedly takes the audiences back to the year 1989 when an unprecedented insurgency began in Kashmir and a vast majority of Hindus were forced to leave the valley. According to the reports, approximately 100,000 of an estimated Kashmiri Pandit population of 140,000 left the valley between February and March 1990. More of them left in the following years so that, by 2011, only around 3,000 families remained in the valley.
‘The Kashmir Files’ stars Mithun Chakraborty, Anupam Kher, Darshan Kumar, Pallavi Joshi, Chinmay Mandlekar, Puneet Issar among the prime cast.
The film ‘The Kashmiri Files’ was scheduled for its theatrically worldwide on 26 January 2022, coinciding with India’s 73rd Republic Day, but was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, especially with the spread of the Omicron variant.