For a man who delivered the biggest mandate for a single party in several decades through unprecedented leverage of digital space, it is but natural for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to seek the same space as a platform for good governance.
Modi gave an inkling of things to come in his ‘victory speech’ after the election results were declared on May 16. It was not a winding, rhetoric-filled public speech but a short and crisp Twitter message, “India has won. Good days are ahead”.
It was time for India 2.0 to log on to the world and he set about his job soon after taking charge.
From ministerial colleagues to bureaucrats, Modi gave each a mandate — get going on social media. President Pranab Mukherjee also laid out the government’s vision during his address to Parliament.
“Emerging technologies like social media will be used as a tool for participative governance, directly engaging the people in policy-making and administration,” the President said.
It summed up Modi’s government and governance.
Modi directed his ministers to open Twitter and Facebook accounts and post all policy initiatives concerning their respective ministries on these platforms.
He has also asked ministers to initiate discussion and engage with people on different initiatives through social media.
Some cabinet ministers, on an average, post about half-a-dozen tweets on any given day informing about their meetings and engagements.
A revamped PMO India website also went live, carrying latest details on Modi’s meeting schedules and speeches. Modi also has about five million followers on Twitter.
Even the foreign ministry has logged on to digital diplomacy big time. An intranet, secure website, is now in place for the use of Indian diplomats and officials around the world. They can use the website to share their thoughts, discuss issues and even download latest pictures of the Prime Minister in action.