Twitter has taken down a racist and inflammatory cartoon posted by the official government account.
The controversial caricature posted by the official Gujarat BJP Twitter account, @BJP4Gujarat, depicts a group of Muslim men in the noose and long beards wearing skull caps with captions that read “Satyamev Jayate” and “No Forgiveness To Those Who Promote Terror”.
The cartoon accurately depicted people sentenced to death for their roles in the 2008 Ahmedabad bomb blasts for violating the micro-blogging site rules.
On February 19, the state BJP tweeted the caricature following a special court ruling that sentenced 38 people to death, while 11 others to life imprisonment for their role in the 2008 Ahmedabad serial bomb blasts that left 56 people dead while more than 200 were injured. The court’s decision was also assessed as a “historic” judgement in which a record 38 people were given the death penalty.
The caricature, which was also posted on BJP Gujarat’s official Instagram account, quickly got a lot of attention on social media sparked various reactions from netizens. The caricature has drawn criticism for likening a typical Muslim image and portraying all Muslims as terror perpetrators.
The left liberals and Islamists have criticized the BJP, accusing it of using the tweet as a call to kill Muslims. Meanwhile, Twitter users accused the BJP of polarising voters in the ongoing Uttar Pradesh assembly election.
Shortly after the BJP tweeted the caricature, Twitter took down the post to violate rules.
When asked about the post, Gujarat social media organizer BJP Yagnish Dave said nothing wrong with the post. He argues that the caricature is made (by the party) based on reports in newspapers and news channels, and there is no intention to target any community.
However, his statement was deemed inaccurate as media reports did not contain pictures of convicts wearing skull caps.