March 26, 2017

#TrollTinderbox : The Muck Stops Here

Who gets to decide the right side of “Dissent”? If you are acerbic towards the Gandhi family, the Khan triumvirate and the likes of Barkha, Rajdeep, Sagarika or Shobha then you have tread on the wrong side of right to dissent and bear the brunt of being called a “Troll”. Swati Chaturvedi’s book “I am a troll” gives account of BJP’s ex- social media volunteer. The book claims Sadhavi Khosla was directed by the social media team to push critical messages about politicians and opponents of BJP. What’s wrong with incisive criticism? Develop a thick skin and deal with it. Sadhavi was pained at the threats and abuses directed at Barkha and Rajdeep. What a pity? Rajdeep, who gave “Boxing Day” at Madison Square a new meaning, needs empathy for 2002 bug which keeps tinkering with his temperament. The sensitivity index of Sadhavi Khosla reached breaking point when the perfectionist Khan was criticised for unwarranted calls of “Intolerance”. She snapped her ties with BJP’s social media team. People who did not buy Aamir’s idea of intolerance signed a petition to boycott Snapdeal and a month later Snapdeal chose not to deal with Aamir. Mr Khan’s hypocrisy is highlighted again when Dhulagarh riots failed to do “Dangal” for intolerance outburst. He kept mum when fatwa was issued against A R Rahman for composing music for a film based on Prophet.

Media darling Arvind Kejriwal’s tone and language defines the rot in public discourse. He has the liberty to call Modi a psycopath and coward. He accuses Najeeb Jung of trading his soul for Vice President post. Jung’s soul longed for academics. Media laps up his obnoxious comments to boost TRP. Kejriwal is the biggest “Troll” to have erupted on Indian Cyberspace. He has an army of crooks who revel in spreading falsehood. False stories about death due to demonetisation were spread by Yugpurush himself. Swati Chaturvedi should have given Kejriwal’s account of trolling rather than Sadhavi Khosla’s. I am afraid Swati’s book does not meet the same fate as Barkha’s ” The Unquiet Land” and Rana Ayub’s “The Gujarat Files”. No one would buy a one sided story or narrative.

The quizmaster Derek O’ Brien coined term “Butcher of Gujarat” for Modi. Mind you that’s not abuse. That’s prerogative of a man who was once a role model for kids in 90’s when he conducted The Bournvita Quiz Show. 90’s kids have become grown ups now. Now they are wondering what on earth is Derek smoking? TMC pipe dream would make him more idiotic. We have “Trolls” like Mr Derek in Indian politics who masquerade as intellectuals and spit filth. Calling a Union Minister “Aunty National” is not sexist but calling bunch of elite journalists “Presstitutes” is derogatory. Double standards? No! That’s Liberal way of measuring “Troll Barometer”. Swati questions PM’s discretion of following certain people on Twitter. She labels some handles which PM follows as “Trolls”. She has her unique way of judging Trolls. Following people on Twitter does not necessarily mean you endorse their views and statements. Modi is not bound to offer an explanation to self-appointed judge, Swati, on troll adjudication. Let her gain wisdom on “Troll-Shashtra” and write another book, “My Experiments with Trolls”.

Picture Credit: YouTube


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Sharat loves to write about technology, social issues and current affairs with a dash of humour.
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