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Cong withdraws its rider on Fb and Twitter for ticket seekers Party says presence in social media no criterion for candidate selection

State Congress’ decision on Saturday drew further attack from the BJP which had already ridiculed it on the earlier instructions.

bhopal Updated: Sep 08, 2018 20:58 IST
Ranjan
Ranjan
Hindustan Times, Bhopal
Congress,Facebook,Twitter
(HT File Photo)

State Congress cancelled its letter on Saturday whereby ticket seekers and party office-bearers were supposed to have 15000 likes on Facebook and 5000 followers on micro blogging networking site Twitter mandatorily, as per a letter issued on Saturday.

“The letter (1272/18 dated 2 September 2018) issued by me related to Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee’s social media stands cancelled”, said Chandraprabhash Shekar, state Congress vice-president and organisation in charge in the letter issued on Saturday.

State Congress’ decision on Saturday drew further attack from the BJP which had already ridiculed the party on its earlier instructions.

State BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal said, “I had already said that the Congress was missing from the ground in Madhya Pradesh and they won’t be able to make their presence felt in virtual world too as they have been cut off from people for decades.”

However, state Congress media in charge Shobha Oza said, “The party took the decision to cancel the earlier instructions as there are limitations particularly in rural part of Madhya Pradesh to be active on social media due to several factors. Presence in social media will not be any compulsion for the party’s decision on the ticket for the assembly elections. However, we all are expected to use social media as much as we can do to counter the BJP’s misinformation campaign.”

As per the earlier diktat all the office-bearers of the party at the state and district level, sitting MLAs and party tickets aspirants were supposed to have pages on Facebook, accounts on Twitter and be active on WhatsApp.

“15000 likes on Facebook page, 5000 followers on Twitter and WhatsApp group with booth level workers in it (as members) is a must”, said the previous letter.

The Sept 2 letter made it clear that the stringent measure was being taken to strengthen the Congress party’s social media’ and to assess presence of ticket seekers in social media before selection of candidates.

The party also expected of the party office-bearers, MLAs and ticket seekers to re-tweet the tweets and, like and share all the posts of Madhya Pradesh Congress on its Facebook page mandatorily.

This didn’t go down well with a section of party leaders and workers”, said Congress sources.

It also gave an opportunity to the ruling party to make fun of the party and its instructions.

First Published: Sep 08, 2018 20:58 IST