IN ANOTHER embarrassing post by an official Twitter handle of a government body, India Post targeted Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday. The tweet, which tagged Kejriwal, said, “you have failed us big time Mr Kejriwal, for your petty political gains you can become headlines for Pakistani press.”
The tweet was later deleted and India Post apologised for it. It claimed that the account had been hacked. “Account hacked & some negative message @ArvindKejriwal has been posted. We sincerely apologise…” it tweeted, tagging Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Minister of State for Communications Manoj Sinha.
This is the fourth time an official social media handle of a government body has been caught on the wrong foot.
On September 8, the official handle of Digital India tweeted a poem promoting killing of Kashmiris by the Indian Army. The tweet, which was deleted and included a screenshot of a poem from Facebook, called it “Heights of #Patriotism..!!!”
The poem, written to the lyrics of a popular Bollywood song, asked the Army not to stop firing on the people till they come to the city square and sing the national anthem. “Issued in public interest; all who love their lives; should quietly come to the city square; sing the national anthem; and not throw any tantrums here,” it said.
Prasad had called the tweet mischievous and said it was not an official tweet. “The contents of the tweet don’t represent the views of the IT ministry, Digital India or the Government of India. I regret the tweet,” he said, when contacted by The Indian Express.
A week earlier, All India Radio’s official handle tweeted about Rahul Gandhi asking, “How he became daring again to defame #RSS?” Rahul had withdrawn his plea in the Supreme Court, asking to quash the defamation case filed against him for holding the RSS responsible for Mahatma Gandhi’s death. He said he’d rather stand trial in the case.
AIR’s tweet asked him to “stick to comments”. The tweet was later deleted on the direction of the AIR Director General of News Sitanshu Kar, who said one of the four people who manage the Twitter account had posted it.
In late July, the Twitter account for Startup India retweeted two tweets targeting journalists and Pakistan. The retweets were later retracted, and Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman blamed it on an external agency that, she said, was hired to tweet for Startup India.
“The unauthorised retweets were done by one employee of the agency duly hired by the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion through a tendering process. Person assigned by the agency for this particular job is not decided by the department and is the sole prerogative of the agency,” she had said.