It is 2014 and the government has yet again set its agenda straight with social media in the country. According to latest reports, Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde has drawn attention to the alleged misuse of social media in circulating old provocative photographs to foment communal riots, and said his ministry plans to put a check on it.
The minister made the statement while addressing a function at the launch of a Hindi newspaper in Patna. Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar and RJD president Lalu Prasad were also present at the launch. He further added,
“Sitting in the Home Ministry, I see old provocative photographs being circulated on Facebook, which [I feel] results in communal riots. Seeing the evil impact of social media which is taking the society in a wrong direction we are thinking of imposing a check on them.”
In his address he also emphasized about honest journalism, how facts are being twisted in the name of investigative journalism and added that the print media also faces challenge from faster mode of delivery of information on Internet.
Fear from social media is not new for our government and Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde. Last year during November, the minister had raised the same issue while addressing the conference of state DGPs/IGPs in the capital New Delhi. He had referred that mischievous use of the social media is sparking off communal trouble, ethnic clashes and reviving militancy in states like Punjab, and said that there is a need to monitor such propaganda over the internet.
Prior to that while laying the foundation stones of BSF and SSB battalion headquarters at Sitarganj in Uttarakhand, he had stated that the Centre is contemplating measures to stop misuse of social media, as it poses a serious threat to internal security.