NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said he is contemplating giving up social media presence. "This Sunday, thinking of giving up my social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube. Will keep you all posted," he tweeted from his official twitter handle.
The tweet created a flutter as within minutes #NoSir started trending with social media users urging Modi not to give up his social media accounts.
The Congress took a swipe at the prime minister, with Rahul Gandhi tweeting "Give up hatred, not social media accounts" after tagging Modi's post.
This Sunday, thinking of giving up my social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube. Will keep you all posted.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 2, 2020
The prime minister is one of the most-followed world leaders on social media. He has 53.3 million followers on Twitter, 44 million on Facebook and 35.2 million on Instagram. The Twitter handle of Prime Minister's Office has 32 million followers.
In September 2019, PM Modi was the third most followed world leader on the microblogging site, behind only US President Donald Trump and his predecessor Barack Obama.
The Prime Minister was the first Indian to cross the 50-million followers' mark on Twitter.
Reacting to PM's tweet, Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala posted, "Respected Modi ji, Earnestly wish you would give this advice to the concerted army of trolls, who abuse-intimidate-badger-threaten others every second in your name! Sincere Regards, Citizens of India.
The word "No sir" has started trending on Twitter since the time this tweet was put out by the Prime minister.
The Congress on Monday took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his tweet, with Rahul Gandhi saying "give up hatred, not social media accounts".
Give up hatred, not social media accounts. pic.twitter.com/HDymHw2VrB— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) March 2, 2020
Reacting to the PM's tweet, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor tweeted, "The PM's abrupt announcement has led many to worry whether it's a prelude to banning these services throughout the country too.
"As @narendramodi knows well, social media can also be a force for good & for positive & useful messaging. It doesn't have to be about spreading hate."
Congress' leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury alleged Prime Minister Modi's "new ploy" of leaving social media is to "divert the attention of the nation from burning issues".
Former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis' wife Amruta on Monday said she would follow Modi, hours after the latter tweeted that he was contemplating giving up his social media presence.
Meanwhile, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Preeti Sharma Menon has expressed "doubt" whether the PM will leave social media.
"Sometimes it's the smallest decision that can change our life forever!I will follow the path of my leader!!" tweeted Amruta.
Amruta had courted controversies with her tweets in the past.
In the latest such row, she had termed Shiv Sena leader and state cabinet minister Aaditya Thackeray a "worm".
AAP national executive member Preeti Sharma Menon tweeted: "A leader should remain connected to the people and should not leave social media, anyway I doubt he will. But what he could do this sunday, which happens to be women's day is to stop following those who give rape threats to women".
Within minutes the hashtag #NoSir started trending with social media users urging the PM not to give up his social media accounts.
(With PTI Inputs)