2019 Lok Sabha Poll prep: BJP bulletin to counter Opposition’s propaganda

Mumbai: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will again focus on the use of social media to win the 2019 Parliament and state assembly elections. The party’s national president, Amit Shah, imparted his ‘mantras’ on how to use social media in three ways during his visit to Pune on July 7.

Shah’s mantra is to ensure that people without any political leanings or affiliations whatsoever, will receive a BJP bulletin countering allegations and propaganda by opposition parties.

Shah’s other mantra is: The ruling party is always right and the others are wrong. “Do not forget that only Narendra Modi and BJP are the options in Indian politics and other parties cannot rule the country like us,” he said.

A BJP insider said, “The social media team will work in three groups — one group will focus on print media and will look for anti-BJP or anti-BJP government stories published in the media. The group will counter the story and send messages to five select people in every voter booth. A booth usually has 4,000-5,000 registered voters.

The second group will focus on electronic media, while the third group will focus on creativity, putting out graphics or  cartoons on various issues to counter the opposition.

Shah asked the social media team to locate at least five people in every booth to whom the BJP bulletin could be forwarded daily. These five people must have a smart phone and be  social media users. Shah said there was no need for such people to be BJP supporters, suggesting instead, that neutral people would be more beneficial to the party.

“Social media played an important role in the party’s victory in 2014. It is the same formula BJP must use in the 2019 poll,” Shah told the team.

Recalling an incident while addressing the gathering, he said, “A message about (the then chief minister of Uttar Pradesh) Akhilesh Yadav slapping his father Mulayam Singh Yadav (president of the Samajwadi Party) was spread through social media before the UP assembly poll. Thousands of people forwarded it and in Delhi, I was asked about the factuality of that message. That was when I realised the power of social media.”

To counter the Congress’s proposed mahagathbandhan, Shah suggested to the creative group, it could put out a cartoon, depicting 21 leaders, each holding a one-year-old child, to show that it was impossible for a one-year-old to defeat the BJP.

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