NEW DELHI: The Ministry of External Affairs is the most active wing of the Modi government on Twitter with 130 official Twitter accounts, revealed an RTI response. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Cabinet number 2, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, have two accounts each for information dissemination and ensuring quick response during any crisis.
The External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is widely acknowledged and appreciated for reaching out to Indians facing problems abroad with assistance.
Swaraj has 4.96 million followers, far ahead of her US counterpart Secretary of State John Kerry, who has only 1.33 million followers.
Similarly @MEAquerry, the official account of Minister of State V K Singh, is dedicated to address queries related to the MEA and passports for Indian nationals. Besides, personal accounts of both Swaraj and V K Singh, the MEA has five other official accounts including @MEAindia (Twitter handle of the official spokesperson), @Indiandiplomacy (focuses on public diplomacy related to content and initiatives), @CPVindia (official Twitter handle of Additional Secretary Overseas Indian Affairs) and @Passportsevamea (Official Twitter handle for Passport Seva support). The Ministry, in its RTI reply, said that it was working to get all of its missions and posts across the world on Twitter in order to effectively use the medium to engage with local populations, address diaspora concerns and respond to consular queries and concerns.
“At present, 125 missions and posts have Twitter handles which are managed and operated by officers posted at the missions/post. Thus, the total number of official Twitter handles of the Ministry of External Affairs is 130 at present,” the RTI reply said.
The Official Twitter handle of Prime Minister Narendra Modi (@PMOindia) has 10.9 Million followers while his personal handle, @narendramodi, has 19.5 million followers. The government in the last few months has encouraged Ministers and bureaucrats — up to the Director level — to join the micro blogging site to communicate with the public regarding the Centre’s welfare-centric initiatives and important policy decisions.