CM Jagan Reddy launching the website. (Photo@AndhraPradeshCM)
CM Jagan Reddy launching the website. (Photo@AndhraPradeshCM)

Jagan Reddy launches Fact Check website to counter fake news against govt

CM Jagan Reddy said the officials could make use of the platform and counter the propaganda with evidence.
By Srinivasa Rao Apparasu, Hindustan Times, Hyderabad
PUBLISHED ON MAR 05, 2021 07:48 PM IST

Andhra Pradesh chief minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Friday launched an official “Factcheck” portal aimed at curbing misinformation by vested interests against the state government.

Launching the website: http://factcheck.ap.gov.in at his camp office, the chief minister said the objective of this initiative is to stop the spread of malicious propaganda on social media. He also launched an exclusive Twitter handle for the same.

Jagan said the officials could make use of the platform and counter the propaganda with evidence. The CM also directed authorities to take action against individuals involved in such malicious activities.

“No one has the right to damage the reputation of an individual or the system with mala fide intentions. There is a need to counter such malicious campaigns which are intended to mislead the people on the ambitious programmes of the government. People have to know the facts,” he said.

The launch of the new portal follows the latest campaign on social media against the government accusing it of promoting Christianity thereby hurting the sentiments of the Hindus.

“A couple of days ago, there was a systematic campaign in the social media by Bharatiya Janata Party leaders and sympathizers with the hashtag #Encroachment4ChristInAP, alleging that a huge cross was being erected on a hillock in Edlapadu, Guntur, where carvings of Hindu deities already exist,” a CMO official pointed out.

BJP national secretary and co-incharge of Andhra Pradesh Sunil Deodhar took to Twitter claiming that the cross was being constructed where once footprints of Sita Maa and carving of Lord Narasimha existed. He also added that “Christian mafias” were creating havoc in the Guntur district, despite protests by RSS and the BJP cadre.

The official handle of Guntur Rural district police promptly responded to his tweet, explaining the topography of the location through a video. Sub-Inspector of Edlapadu clarified that the hillock on which the cross was being erected is 500 metres away from the hillock on which the idol of Narasimha Swamy is present.

“He also mentioned that no official complaint was lodged either with the police or the Revenue Department regarding the concern raised by the BJP member on social media,” the CMO official pointed out.

Similarly, there were a few posts regarding the reduction in height of the Polavaram dam that went viral on social media. The posts claimed that Polavaram project height is being reduced from 45.72 meters to 41.1 meters.

“Some media houses reported this speculation with heated debates, and posts appeared on social media with false information without any verified source. But during a review meeting on the progress of the Polavaram project chaired by the chief minister, the officials clarified that the works on the project were going as per the design that was cleared by Central Water Commission and Union Water Resources Ministry. There is no proposal of reducing the height of the dam,” he pointed out.

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