Published: Sun, October 22, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Bots behind Rahul Gandhi's Twitter popularity?

Bots behind Rahul Gandhi's Twitter popularity?

Rahul Gandhi's "resurgence" on social media also goes hand in hand with another news report claiming that the Congress had roped in Big Data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica for a more targeted digital campaign to woo voters.

Rahul's tweets have been garnering more traction in the number of retweets, reports. She had retweeted an ANI analytical report that seemed to suggest that most retweets for Gandhi's official handle @OfficeOfRG had a Russian, Kazakh or Indonesian origin.

A war of words broke out between Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and Minister of Textiles Smriti Irani on Twitter on Friday wherein, the latter attacked the former while claiming that the Congress will lose elections despite its efforts.

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The BJP, which has been leading the race among political parties to dominate the social media, has begun questioning the sudden rise in Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi's popularity on microblogging site Twitter. Recent reports have mentioned that Rahul Gandhi is overtaking Prime Minister Narendra Modi in terms of popularity on twitter and that the Congress leader is getting raised volumes of retweets now which probably made the new agency go for an in-depth analysis of his account. It was in response to US President Donald Trump's tweet, praising better relations with Pakistan and its leaders.

The tweet quickly reached 20,000 retweets and now has touched 30,000, the report claimed, adding a close analysis of this tweet showed that these alleged bots with a Russian, Kazakh or Indonesian characteristic were routinely retweeting the Congress vice-president's tweets. It got almost 30,000 retweets.

Smriti's junior, Rajyavardhan Rathore, tweeted: "In sports, this would come under "Doping". hey wait??" She added that the story was "factually wrong" and that it was an attempt to "please the I&B ministry and the Bots Janata Party". Rajeev Chandrashekhar, NDA's Kerala chief, wrote, "Desperate times call for desperate measures?"

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When asked about Rahul's twitter growth AAP had earlier raised questions whether the retweets or real and it appears they were not.

"The BJP refuses to react, address and clear the air as far as the real issues are concerned which touch every Indian. Does "dope" remind you of someone", he said in a tweet. Now, social media experts have revealed that Rahul Gandhi's popularity may be due to automatic bots being used. "Who is retweeting and not retweeting it is hardly important", Singh said.

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