A Cyber war has erupted in the social media led by Twitter. India is the target of this war and an attempt is made by the Khalistani supporters settled in Canada and elsewhere to destabilize the Indian Government. These anti India forces are taking the support of the Indian politicians and the opportunity presented by the protests against the farm laws to launch a Cyber World war on India. A time has come for the Indian Government to stand firm and fight.
Twitter has taken a conscious decision to be part of this Anti India political campaign and disobeyed the orders of the Government under Section 69 (A) of ITA 2000 which is the law of the land. It has been promoting anti India propaganda which is carried on by vested political interests with false narration. This is unbecoming of any organization carrying the tag of a “Social Media”.
In the past, Twitter is known to be sympathetic to Pakistani interests. Its “Verified” status was provided more on the basis of political affiliation and was disputed frequently with rejection of genuine requests while fake accounts proliferated.
Most of the celebrity twitter handles have been managed by their PR agencies and were not managed by the verified owner. This fact is not properly disclosed on the Twitter system. The tweets and re-tweets have been often influenced by political ideology and may be even monetary considerations. As a result, Twitter was slowly degenerating into a form of “Corrupt Media”.
This degeneration of Twitter has now turned into a conspiratorial attack on India. When Twitter took on Mr Donald Trump and removed his account, they took the moral high stand that they were preventing fake posts that could disturb the society. However, in taking a decision to remove the account as against flagging the disputed post, Twitter was showing its arrogance to be the “Content Manipulator”.
Contractually, Twitter is well within its right to impose a condition that its platform should not be used to spread hatred etc. But taking a view whether a content is objectionable or not requires a due process and a reference to the judiciary of a country. Even when urgent action is required, the approach should be to post a red flag for the objected content, block out specific words etc and refer the matter to a Court for permission to remove the content so that “Right to Free Speech” is not violated.
But Twitter went ahead and deleted Trump’s account following which Trump followers started exiting Twitter en-mass. Many new social media channels have surfaced to replace Twitter in the aftermath of this Trump Controversy. Just as WhatsApp suffered a migration of users to Telegram and Signal, Twitter is also facing migration to Minds, LBRY and Sessions, according to media reports.
India’s pride Zoho came up with “Arattai” as a potential indigenous replacement of WhatsApp and though it is in its beginning and is yet to be formally launched, there is an indication that WhatsApp will never get back to its previous glory because it ignored the consumer sentiments. A similar situation may develop in the Twitter also. Already some apps like “Tooter” are trying to occupy small spaces in the “Short Messaging Service” and it will not be long before Zoho or another IT platforms start a robust platform that can challenge Twitter.
The existing telecom players themselves can overnight set up such services by modifying and replicating their SMS system on to a cloud platform. NIC can itself set up a message board system to immediately substitute Twitter and create a dedicated site search engine to substitute the “Twitter hash tags”. Later it can introduce the system of retweets, notifications etc.
Twitter has chosen to support a gang of motivated persons who are posting false and provocative tweets saying that Indian Government is carrying out a genocide on farmers.
It must be placed on record that the persons posing themselves as farmers and carrying on a protest on the borders of Delhi are not real farmers. Some of them may be rich land holders who can afford to protest for political reasons. They have tractors which they can use to kill or threaten to kill police and innocent bystanders as well as media persons reporting the agitation. They can manage mobile restaurants with automatic roti making machines deployed to serve fast food to the agitators. They are supporters of a separate sikh state of Khalistan and representatives of Pakistan disguised in turbans. They are the people who carried out terrorist activities including hijacking planes and killing thousands of persons in India and elsewhere.
The reason these agitators are protesting is that the some of the reformist farm laws passed by the Indian Parliament are helping the real farmers to realize a higher farm revenue while the intermediary traders lose their commission. It is alleged that a huge amount of farmer’s income was being siphoned off by the Mandi’s and Regulated Markets (APMC) as commission and it was funding several political leaders who owned control of these facilities. The new laws actually donot dismantle any of the existing facilities including the “Minimum Support Price system” . However it introduces a choice to the farmers to sell their produce outside the APMCs if they want. It gives them a choice to contractually sell their produce before production so that they are insured against any loss on account of reasons such as natural calamities.
Hence neither the agitators are real farmers nor the cause of their protest is justified. In fact the protest itself is “Anti-Farmer”.
It is possible that some of the agitators are unaware of the real advantage of the farm laws and have been misled with speculative fear spread by the opposition leaders. It is also possible that the protestors are paid money to participate in the protest. There is clear evidence that some protest leaders are threatening the farmers in the villages to send protest representatives or face coercive action. This is nothing but “Terrorism”.
The Government so far is handling the protest with kid gloves because there are a set of media managers in India who are part of the fake news cartel.
It is now time for the Indian Government to act firm. The Government has to take action to withdraw all accounts of ministries, including the account of PMO and Modi from Twitter and transfer it to another platform.
At the same time, Twitter by refusing to obey the Indian Government’s order under Section 69 (A) of ITA 2000/8 has committed a legal transgression and has lost its right to continue to be present in India. The Government has every right to block Twitter now and should proceed to take this decision simultaneously with the moving of its account to other platforms. The citizens will follow.
Let us therefore start the movement to quit twitter and migrate to other platforms. Naavi is already on Tooter and is waiting for other platforms to surface. The critical factor in such migration is that it has to be en-masse to succeed.
I urge Jio, Airtel, Vi and NIC as well as Zoho to each start a Short Messaging platform and allow posting of messages for public and group wise sharing of messages without waiting further. One of these five can potentially grow into a global force and challenge Twitter on the global platform.