Army blocks fake Twitter handles created by Pakistani spy agencies after Centre`s Kashmir move

New Delhi: The Indian Army and other security agencies have taken strict action against several fake Twitter handles impersonating senior Army officers, which were allegedly created by Pakistani agencies to spread misinformation about the country after the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A.

“More than 200 Twitter handles of senior officials including Army Chief General Bipin Rawat had been created by the Pakistani spy agencies and their operatives. We have complained against them and a large number of them have been suspended now,” Col Aman Anand, Army’s Public Relations Officer, said.

Sharing more information, Col Anand said, ”We’ve observed some fake social media handles, particularly on names of some senior Army officials. We’ve taken up the case with concerned agencies. They’ve now been brought down. Monitoring of such handles is always on by all agencies.”

The accounts had been formed and activated soon after the withdrawal of special status to Jammu and Kashmir and had been tweeting entirely cooked up information to suit the narrative of Pakistan about the situation in the Kashmir Valley, he said. 

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The officers in whose names the handles had been created include Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, former Vice Chief Lt Gen Devraj Anbu and former Central Army Commander Lt Gen BS Negi apart from several other fake accounts of Army officers using their pictures available on social media or other places.

Malegaon blast accused Lt Col Shrikant Purohit`s name was also used to create an account.

“Some of the accounts were spreading so much misinformation that Twitter suspended them at a notice of 15-20 minutes and more than 50 such ids have already been suspended,” the Army said. 

The location of the Twitter accounts has not yet been ascertained as the location was turned off in the accounts and more investigations would be carried out to check that information. 

A fake accounting the name of one Colonel Vijay Acharya was created and it tweeted that he was leaving the Army as more than 65 of his unit soldiers had been killed by Pakistan and it was widely used by Pakistani TV channels also to give it credence and create a narrative in their propaganda against India on the Kashmir issue. 

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