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International toolkit gets activated to support Amritpal Singh, social media campaign sees a spike after Mo Dhaliwal sought Rihanna’s help

On March 21, so far, 17,900 tweets had already been made with hashtag #WeStandWithAmritpalSingh, of which 8,400 were from India and 4,900 were from the US. Notably, as the internet has been restored in some parts of Punjab, a spike is seen in the number of tweets from India.

On March 21, hours after pro-Khalistan toolkit fame Mo Dhaliwal called upon singer and actress Rihanna to speak up for Punjab, the international toolkit got activated on social media platforms. OpIndia scrolled through Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to look for possible signs of a well-organised campaign supporting fugitive pro-Khalistan separatist leader Amritpal Singh. We noticed the hashtag #WeStandWithAmritpalSingh trending on Twitter, which is the main platform that is being used. Here is what we have found so far.

trending topic from India. Source: Twitter

The reach on Twitter

The hashtag started to appear on the social media platform Twitter on March 18, 2023, the day on which a massive crackdown by Punjab Police along with central agencies began. On the first day, around 5,500 tweets were made using the hashtag, including 2,800 tweets from India.

Source: Talkwalker

Between March 19 and March 20, the number of tweets skyrocketed to around 40,000, with 18,000 tweets from India and 11,800 from the US. 

Source: Talkwalker

On March 21, so far, 17,900 tweets had already been made, of which 8,400 were from India and 4,900 from the US. Notably, as the internet has been restored in some parts of Punjab, a spike is seen in the number of tweets from India. Though in smaller numbers, tweets from Canada (1,800) and Pakistan (430) are also adding to the narrative.

Source: Talkwalker

Please note that the stats are based on which country the user has selected in their profile. The actual data may vary.

Coming to the tweets, videos of International reporters were used to set the narrative. The first video here is from Satluj Network, which Mangat Group owns. Tony Mangat is the founder of Mangat Group.

Though the video appears to be from International media, one glance at its Facebook page makes it clear that it is owned by pro-Khalistani elements living in the US. Many videos on the channel are in Punjabi. Here is a post in Punjabi in support of Amritpal Singh. In the post, the channel spreads fake news that Amritpal has been arrested.

Source: Facebook/Satluj Network.

In the second post, a reporter from TNM quoted CNN’s hitjob and talked about how the internet shutdown affected people.

There have been thousands of such tweets posted on the microblogging platform with the said hashtag, aimed at inflaming tensions in India.

Source: Twitter
Source: Twitter
Source: Twitter

The hashtag is being shared on Instagram as well.

Hashtag was gaining traction on Instagram. Source: Instagram

Though TikTok is banned in India, it is being used to gain traction where the platform is famous. Many videos published in favour of Amritpal Singh using this particular hashtag had over 50,000 views.

TikTok is being used to set a narrative in the Amritpal Singh case. Source: TikTok.

Crackdown on Amritpal Singh

On March 18, Punjab Police and central agencies launched a massive crackdown on pro-Khalistan separatist leader Amritpal Singh. So far, over 110 associates of Singh have been arrested. However, he is still on the run. Internet was suspended on March 18 for one day, but the suspension was extended for two more days. Internet services were resumed in some areas of Punjab on March 21.

Police have alleged that Singh was in contact with ISI and received funds from Pakistan. Furthermore, it has been reported that Singh was creating a private army in the guise of an anti-drug drive and de-addiction centre. Following the crackdown, official Indian Government establishments in London and San Francisco were attacked.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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