The Congress party has launched a ''Join Congress Social Media'' campaign, aiming to hire five lakh online "warriors" who will counter hate and "defend the idea of India", said former party chief Rahul Gandhi on Monday. The move is seen as one to counter its rival BJP's IT cell.
Inviting the youth to join the Congress campaign, Gandhi said in a video message that the country needs non-violent warriors to fight for truth, compassion, and harmony. "As a young person, you know what is going on. Nothing is hidden from you, in your schools, colleges, and universities, you can see the oppression, you can see the attack on the idea of India," he said.
Targeting the saffron party, the Congress leader claimed that thousands of people - whom he referred to as "troll army" - spread hate on social media, and are paid to do so. He said the country needs warriors to defend liberal values on social media. AICC in-charge (Administration) Pawan Kumar Bansal said the party is looking for a strong army of five lakh social media "warriors".
"Look outside Delhi, you can see what is happening to the farmers. The backbone of this war on the nation is a troll army. Thousands of people who spread hatred and anger and are paid to do so. We need warriors to defend liberal values, to defend the ideas of compassion, peace, harmony, and affection," the former Congress chief said.
Gandhi encouraged youths to join the army of 'truth' to counter the army of hatred and win the online battle. AICC social media head Rohan Gupta informed that people can join the campaign through the party website, its toll-free number, or via WhatsApp.
Congress will take this campaign to people for a month and invite them to join. After that, a basic interview will be held in all states, and "responsibilities will be assigned" to people working at different levels -- district, state, and national -- accordingly. Gupta said that those selected after interviews will be given training.
Party spokesperson Pawan Khera said when the BJP came to power in 2014, many criticised the Congress for not being on social media, and when the party became active online, many said it is not active on the ground, but now "we are on both".