About 250 Twitter handles created to carry out misinformation campaign on Bhima-Koregaon violence

Mumbai: Maharashtra Police said on Wednesday that around 250 Twitter accounts were created to spread misinformation about the Koregaon-Bhima violence and to mobilise support for allegedly holding demonstrations abroad to defame the Modi government.

The report submitted by police to the state home department, mentions that an elaborate online campaign was launched to highlight the Koregaon-Bhima violence at international level, a senior official said.

“A deliberate mobilisation and misinformation campaign was carried out on social media by circulating videos and speeches on the Koregaon-Bhima violence,” he said.

As a result of this campaign, there was “a large-scale mobilisation” in the UK and a “known group” supported these protests, the official said, but declined to name the group. He further said the police has found ‘suspicious videos’ of speeches in which activists from the UK can be heard talking about the Koregaon-Bhima violence.

Protests were held in front of the Indian High Commission in London in mid-January to condemn the violence that broke out on January 1 during the 200th anniversary celebrations of the Battle of Koregaon-Bhima in Pune district.

“We suspect that such demonstrations were held to ensure negative publicity and to defame Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government,” the official said. “Police usually monitor activity on social media and send hundreds of reports to the government,” he said.

(With inputs from PTI)