PM Follows ‘Normal People’: BJP on Tweets Hailing Lankesh’s Death

Tweeple were unhappy with the fact that Modi continues to follow those who gloat over Lankesh’s death.

Updated
India
3 min read
Gauri Lankesh, a journalist, was shot dead on 5 September.
i

Several angry Twitter users populated the social media site with hashtag #BlockNarendraModi on Thursday. Reason? Their seething rage about the fact that the Prime Minister follows people who openly celebrated the murder of senior journalist Gauri Lankesh. Twitter was flooded with not only tributes for the noted journalist, but also posts that hailed her death.

Lankesh was shot at and killed outside her Bengaluru home on Tuesday.

‘Expressing Happiness is Shameful’

Law and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday condemned those who lauded Lankesh’s killing. “Expressing happiness on the killing of anyone is shameful, regrettable and totally against Indian traditions,” Prasad tweeted.

But that didn’t appease Twitterati. They demanded the prime minister unfollow the accounts.

The BJP on Thursday described the Twitter trend as “mischievous and contorted”. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi follows normal people,” the statement issued by the party’s information and technology chief Amit Malaviya said. “The PM following some is not a character certificate of a person. The PM also follows Rahul Gandhi who is accused in loot and fraud.”

When ‘Nationalists’ Celebrated Lankesh’s Death

On Tuesday evening, as Bengalureans were wrapping up for the day, news emerged that Lankesh, a vocal critic of the right wing, had been shot dead in cold blood outside her residence.

Shortly after, even as her family, friends and the media fraternity were reeling from the shock of her death, Twitter user Nikhil Dadhich put out this tweet.

Nikhil Dadhich’s deplorable Tweet after the death of journalist Gauri Lankesh.
Nikhil Dadhich’s deplorable Tweet after the death of journalist Gauri Lankesh.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/Vikram Dadhich)

Roughly translated, it says the journalist died a dog’s death and all the sympathisers (referred to as ‘puppies’ in the tweet) are mewling. According to his Twitter bio, Nikhil is a “businessman”, “Hindu Nationalist” and feels “Honored To Be Followed By PM Sh @narendramodi Ji”.

Nikhil has now deleted his extremely deplorable tweet, perhaps following the criticism, but a glance through social media comments shows that his toxic mentality is shared by many.

A Facebook post made by Vikram Aditya Rana.
A Facebook post made by Vikram Aditya Rana.
(Photo Courtesy: Facebook/ VikramAditya Rana)
A picture of Gauri Lankesh with Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid.
A picture of Gauri Lankesh with Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid.
(Photo Courtesy:Twitter /#वरिष्ठ_दलाल_पत्रकार)

There was also a series of tweets made by Jagrati Shukla, a journalist who, according to her bio, has previously worked with ZEE Media and Network18, and is a "nationalist".

(With inputs from The News Minute)

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