Cong to use social media to fight Modi

A full-scale media war between the Congress and the BJP will break in the coming days with the Sonia Gandhi-led party deciding to puncture “Team Modi’s” campaign through social media.

The Congress has decided to use khidkee, facebook of the party and its sympathisers and sampark (communication) for sending bulk SMSes, to make its leaders, workers and sympathisers well-informed about the issues with facts and figures which can counter Mr Modi’s propaganda team.
This was decided at the party’s two-day “All-India communication workshop for spokespersons and media panellists” here on Tuesday.
The Congress’ focus is on training its communicators in tweeting, blog writing, one-liner and sound bytes after realising that these are the effective means in the propaganda war.
According to the sources, the delegates were told how corporates are using television channels for Mr Modi’s projection as a part of the market strategy.
Besides, Mr Modi has promised them that he will take care of their interests once the BJP comes to power at the Centre, they said.
“Television channels have no ideology, they have distributed parties among themselves to promote business interests,” a speaker told them.
Mr Modi has built up his image through television channels controlled by corporates and through the social media despite that he has yet to emerge as a vote catcher outside Gujarat.
Union minister Manish Tewari told the party’s media strategists Mr Modi is going to be an issue in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections and the Congress has to face the challenge upfront.
Sources said Mr Tewari, who is the information and broadcasting minister, said this in response to questions including one as to how to tackle the challenge posed by Mr Modi.
Some of the delegates drew Mr Tewari’s attention on how Doordarshan do not call Congress leaders for panel discussions despite having a wider reach. To which he said it is controlled by Prasar Bharati while maintaining that the party leaders are not keen to go the DD.
Mr Tewari said that one needed to be extra careful while tweeting as a statement is interpreted in various ways by various people.
Mr Sanjay Jha, who is said to have joined the Congress “recently” told the delegates how to face electronic media, especially anchors.
Union minister Shashi Tharoor, who has found himself in controversy over his tweets, told the party spokespersons that social media needed to be handled with care.

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