Combat fake news against govt., says Amit Shah

Amit Shah asks BJP members to use social media to publicise its achievements

Even a united Opposition would not be able to defeat the BJP in the Lok Sabha election, BJP president Amit Shah said on Sunday, while expressing confidence that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would win a second term as Prime Minister.

“Rahul Gandhi’s Congress party, which ruled the country for seven decades, now demands an account of the BJP’s rule of four-and-a-half years… but we are cleansing the Congress’s dirt of 70 years and will continue to remain in power for the next 50 years,” Mr. Shah claimed.

He was addressing a gathering of the party’s social media cell members at the city’s Balgandharva Rangmandir.

Mr. Shah exhorted the party’s social media cell to gird up for the poll, and combat the spread of “false news against the BJP government” with the vigour of a “social media warrior”.

“Henceforth, elections will be fought through the medium of social media. It is not enough merely to be able to use social media. The party’s aims and objectives must be clearly delivered through crisp and sharp posts,” he said.

‘Obtaining results’

He stressed that “obtaining results” and not frivolous entertainment was the real purpose of social media.

“If [NCP chief] Sharad Pawar blames the BJP government for farmer suicides, then our cyber cell team must immediately respond to him with the correct farmer suicide figures under the misrule of the Congress-NCP (Nationalist Congress Party) coalition in Maharashtra,” Mr. Shah said, urging the BJP cyber cell to remain vigilant in scouring newspapers and tracking down viral anti-government posts that speak out against the government’s projects.

Talking about the importance of social media in winning elections, Mr. Shah said that the ugly public feud between Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav and his father Mulayam Singh, which went viral on social media, paved the way for the BJP’s ascendancy in Uttar Pradesh after the 2014 Parliamentary election.

“Proper responses to anti-government posts must be based on thorough analysis. Remain active on all forms of social media — Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. Denials of anti-government propaganda must be a coordinated effort,” Mr. Shah told the gathering.

The BJP president also called for the creation of a ‘Smartphone Swayamsevak’ at the booth level in order to maintain the BJP’s rule from the ‘Panchayat to the Parliament’.

Later, during his address ‘Life and Mission of Chanakya in today’s context’ at the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)-affiliated Rambhau Mhalgi Prabhodini, the BJP president claimed that Mr. Modi’s ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikaas’ credo was based on Chanakya’s teachings.

“The significance of Chanakya’s teachings and importance has yet to be realised. His teachings of 2,300 years ago are still relevant today. A number of modern concepts — that of an economic regulator, wealth tax, foreign trade policy — were not western concepts but derived from Chanakya’s thoughts,” Mr. Shah remarked.

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