Startup India #fail: Official Twitter handle retweets trolls, apologises

Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in a series of tweets, blamed an external agency that was hired to handle the Startup India Twitter account.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: July 27, 2016 10:14 pm
Startup india twitter, startup india twitter trolls, nirmala sitharaman twitter, nirmala sitharaman startup india Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in a series of tweets, blamed an external agency that was hired to handle the Startup India Twitter account.

The official Twitter handle of Startup India came under fire on Wednesday after its followers noticed that it had retweeted two unrelated posts, targeting journalists. The handle, which usually retweets news regarding startups, apologised for the error. “We are here to create the world’s best startup ecosystem. Unwarranted & irrelevant retweets have been deleted. We do not endorse anything outside the startup ecosystem. Apologies to our followers,” it said.

Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in a series of tweets, blamed an external agency that was hired to handle the Startup India Twitter account. “The unauthorized re-tweets were done by one employee of the agency duly hired by 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 said.

She added that the usual practice of getting the tweets approved from the ministry was not followed in this case. Saying that the two “unauthorized retweets” were immediately removed, Sitharaman said that the employee hired by the external agency has resigned from his job. “We hope that inadvertent misdeeds of one person outside our department will not undermine the true spirit of Team Startup India,” Sitharaman said.

Sitharam was congratulated by her followers for the prompt response. Puducherry Governor Kiran Bedi and Bharatiya Janata Party’s head of IT cell, Arvind Gupta were among those who commended her for the efforts.

However, the incident did not go unnoticed as screenshots of the retweets started doing rounds on Twitter. Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia tweeted saying, “So this is what @narendramodi ji wants to start in India by @startupindia, A start up of abuses, violence & hate.”

The apology tweeted by the Startup India handle is above.

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