Did a Press Information Bureau Twitter Handle “Like” Pornographic Posts… Once Again?

Social Commentary

Did a Press Information Bureau Twitter Handle “Like” Pornographic Posts… Once Again?

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty

A Twitter handle run by the Press Information Bureau is making eyes roll once again. The government agency’s official Hindi account was caught “liking” inappropriate pornographic posts for the second time since March.

Social media was quick to pounce. A journalist asked whether tax-payer money was being used to pay Press Information Bureau employees to watch porn during office hours.

Another journalist said it was now confirmed that the handle was committed to baffling its followers.

Back in March, both the English and Hindi versions of the Press Information Bureau handle were called out for similar violations.

Several social media users had reported that the accounts were liking inappropriate posts — from Japanese cosplay to pornography to food pictures.

The Press Information Bureau’s official handle had, at the time, blamed the likes on an “unknown malfunction”. It had said that it was working on resolving the situation.

But the situation doesn’t seem to have been resolved yet, with several users discovering on Tuesday that a couple of sleazy tweets were still in the account’s “likes” tab.

Activist and Congress member Shehzad Poonawallah used this opportunity to remind his followers that legislators have also been accused of watching porn at work — some of whom have even been promoted later.

He was referring to a 2012 incident, in which two BJP ministers had to quit their posts after they were caught scrolling through obscene posts in the Assembly. One of those ministers is now Karnataka Deputy CM Laxman Savadi.

A Congress minister has also been accused of watching porn on his smartphone at a public event in Karnataka in 2016.

Back in March this year, meanwhile, the Ministry of Home Affairs Facebook page had made itself the butt of jokes, after accidentally posting a picture of a Royal Stag bottle on its official page. The page was posting Cyclone Amphan updates at the time.

In the last few months, the Press Information Bureau’s handle has come under fire on several occasions, although mostly by online fact-checkers. After its recent activity, we’re sure it’s bound to get a lot more attention.