Twitter bids good riddance to bad rubbish!

Social media major takes down former IPS officer Nageshwar Rao's offensive tweet about the death of Swami Agnivesh


Merely hours after the death of spiritual leader and social activist Swami Agnivesh, former IPS officer and CBI Chief Nageshwar Rao had posted a deeply offensive tweet celebrating his demise. After mass reporting against the tweet by several senior journalists and activists, Twitter took it down on Sunday.

Swami Agnivesh had a stellar track record of standing up against social injustices, especially bonded labour. He died of liver disease and complications arising out of multiple organ failure in Delhi on Saturday evening. He had been a thorn in the side of right-wing extremists for decades, and had even been brutally attacked by them in Jharkhand two years ago leading to serious injuries that may have gotten complicated over time leading to his death. But, after his passing, no one expected anything as crass as the tweet by Rao which read:

“GOOD RIDDANCE @swamiagnivesh

You were an Anti-Hindu donning saffron clothes.

You did enormous damage to Hinduism.

I am ashamed that you were born as a Telugu Brahmin.

మేక వన్నె పులి

गोमुख व्याग्रं

Lion in sheep clothes

My grievance against Yamaraj is why did he wait this long!”

His Tweet had drawn criticism from many quarters, including his fellow policemen:



Many members of civil society had also openly demanded that it be taken down. The tweet was reported as offensive to Twitter by many users. But Rao had justified the original tweet’s sickening celebration of death in his subsequent tweets:



Many who share Rao’s ideas continued to defend him.




But irony died a thousand deaths when, M Nageshwar Rao quoted Voltaire after Twitter took down the Tweet that was clearly in poor taste.



It is however, good to see at least one social media giant openly take a stand against hate. After Facebook’s allegedly deliberate blind eye to posts that spread hate and incited violence, the action by Twitter suggests that not all social media companies are either afraid of or in cahoots with a vindictive and hateful regime.



Former IPS officer’s insensitive comment on Swami Agnivesh’s death: New low for the Right-wing 

Champion of human rights, secularism, Swami Agnivesh, passes away at 81



Related Articles