After taking a dig at PM Narendra Modi for trying to run his government via Twitter, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has himself turned to the micro-blogging site for official as well as public communication.
While Yadav earlier had a Twitter handle (@yadavakhilesh) in his personal capacity, he opened an official account as the CM of the state on June 28. The new account is titled CM Office, GoUP and the handle is @CMOfficeUP.
Two more official accounts, one for the UP government (@UPGovt) and the other for the state’s chief secretary (@chiefsecyUP), have also been created the same day.
Earlier Yadav, in a public address after the Badaun rape and murder incident, had derided the “government sitting in Delhi” for “believing that the country is run via Twitter”.
Yadav’s principal secretary Navneet Sehgal, however, argued that the comment was made in a different context. “He is not anti-social media,” the official said.
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Sehgal said the Chief Minister and his government’s debut on Twitter is meant “to make the process of communication between people and the state government more transparent”.
“We understand the relevance of social media in today’s environment. Proper communication with people is important to be seen in the right light,” he said.
Unlike the Modi government, Yadav has, however, decided to keep his ministers away from social media.
“The announcements other ministers and ministries want to make, will be forwarded to the UP government team, which will update them after due consideration,” Sehgal said.
Yadav was not quite active on Twitter in his personal capacity. He opened an account in July 2009 but has tweeted only 135 times in the last five years. Meanwhile, his five-day-old account already has 24 tweets, a majority of them about the UP government’s e-initiatives.
Chief Minister’s principal secretary said the Twitter India team, which met the CM some time ago, went to Lucknow last week to train him and his staff on how to use the medium for effective communication. Sources said Yadav’s office is now looking for professionals to run the Twitter handles.