The Congress VP’s tweets have been laced with satire and humour, especially while attacking the BJP-led Centre.

Are bots behind Rahul Gandhis surging Twitter popularity Congress disagreesPTI
Social Social media Saturday, October 21, 2017 - 18:31

Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi has been making news recently for his renewed Twitter strategy.

His tweets are laced with satire and humour, especially while attacking the BJP-led Central government.

"Satire is also a good form of reaching out to the people. It makes it more interesting. I think the Office of the (Congress) Vice President has used it to good effect and it is something which is resonating with the people of this country because he has been raising the very issues which touch the people of this country," Congress spokesperson RPN Singh said.

Rahul's account has also seen an increasing in the number of followers- he has gained more than one million followers on Twitter in the past three months.

A recent report by ANI however, asks if the rise behind the Congress VP's popularity on the micro-blogging site is because of bots.

The report points out that a tweet made from @OfficeofRG, Rahul's official Twitter account, retweeted Donald Trump.

The US President had put out a tweet about the improving relations between the two countries.

Taking a dig at PM Narendra Modi, Rahul wrote, "Modi ji quick; looks like President Trump needs another hug".

The tweet has been retweeted nearly 30k times and liked over 21k times.

An analysis by ANI showed that the alleged 'bots' with Russian, Kazakh or Indonesian characteristics were regularly retweeting Rahul.

The report states, "Further scrutiny of these Twitter accounts showed that the follower list was usually under 10 users and retweets comprised of random topics from across the world and those of Rahul Gandhi. Moreover, the content of these twitter timelines comprised merely of retweets and a lack of tweets which could be categorised as an original thought."

Divya Spandana, the Social Media & Digital Communications Head of AICC, has called the story factually wrong.

Divya also had a minor spat with Union Minister Smriti Irani who tweeted the ANI story with a sarcastic caption.

In September, Moneycontrol reported that it had got to know from sources that international data firm Cambridge Analytica, which had helped Donald Trump in his election campaign, was in talks with "a large opposition party from India" for the 2019 general elections.

The report however did not identify the party. 

With IANS inputs

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