Sri Lankans Slam Indian Media for ‘Politicising’ Easter Blasts
Sri Lankan Twitter has been quick to call out Indian media and politicians, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for using the series of blasts in the island nation as “election fodder.”
Eight different blasts struck Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, 21 April, leaving at least 290 people dead and 500 injured. At least five Indians have also been killed in these blasts.
Almost 24 hours after the blasts, the Sri Lankan government held local Jihadist group National Thowheed Jamath responsible for the attack.
Pointing to PM Modi’s election rally later the same day, Sri Lanka’s Twitter users called it “political opportunism.” Soon after condoling the deaths, the prime minister appealed to people to vote for BJP’s lotus in order to fight terrorism.
‘Indian Media Already Identifying Muslims’
The Sri Lankan government has not named a suspect, nor identified any of them by religion as till 22 April noon. However, a section of Indian media was quick to identify some of the terror groups, on 21 April itself.
Indian journalist Shreya Dhoundial pointed that Sri Lankan media refraining from speculating did not deter the Indian media.
‘Don’t Trust Indian Media’
Is This Kind of Restraint Good or Bad?
Not just showing restraint in naming the suspects, the government has also blocked social media platforms in the country. NetBlocks observatory told the Associated Press that it detected an intentional blackout of popular services including Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat and Viber.
The defence ministry said the shutdown would extend until the government concludes its investigation into the bomb blasts that rocked churches, luxury hotels and other sites.
While some claimed that such a move was essential for preventing further violence, others thought it was a “bad idea.”
(This copy has been updated after the Sri Lankan government held local Jihadist group National Thowheed Jamath responsible for the serial blasts.)