Micro-blogging site Twitter on Thursday labelled Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Sambit Patra’s tweet on a “toolkit” allegedly prepared by the Congress as “manipulated media”.
Patra alleged on May 18 that the Congress had created the campaign material to tarnish the reputation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the central government in connection with the handling of the coronavirus crisis and the Central Vista project in Delhi.
Twitter labels or removes content that is “significantly and deceptively altered or manipulated”.
Its policy added that tweets that share synthetic and manipulated media are subject to removal if they likely threaten the physical safety of a person or group or pose a risk of mass violence or widespread civil unrest.
Patra had also claimed that the Congress’ Covid-19 relief work was more of a publicity exercise than a “soulful endeavour”. Several BJP leaders, including the party’s National President JP Nadda, amplified Patra’s tweet.
The Congress had complained to Twitter that the document circulated by the BJP was fake, The Wire reported. Fact-checking website AltNews also found that the document was created on a fake Congress letterhead.
On Tuesday, the Congress had asked the Delhi Police commissioner to file a complaint against Patra, Nadda and other BJP leaders on the charges of disseminating forged documents with the intent of creating “communal disharmony and civil unrest”. It also wrote to Twitter, seeking the suspension of the accounts of BJP leaders who spread the forged documents.
The Congress has consistently criticised the Centre for its handling of the coronavirus crisis in India. The party has also hit out at the government for going ahead with the multi-crore Central Vista construction project during the devastation caused by the coronavirus.
The massive second wave of the coronavirus has overwhelmed the health infrastructure in India. Several states are grappling with acute shortages of oxygen, vaccines and drugs.
On Friday, India recorded 2,59,551 new coronavirus cases, pushing the infection tally to 2,60,31,991 since the pandemic broke out in January 2020. The toll climbed by 4,209 to 2,91,331.