Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi’s personal Twitter handle, @narendramodi, tweeted 2,143 times between October 2018 and March 2019, averaging one tweet every two hours and mentioning the handle of his political party, @BJP4India, the most–31 times.
Republic TV is the only news channel PM Modi retweeted, nine times, during these six months. Of all his 35 retweets, seven mentioned his own Twitter handle.
The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as well as PM Modi are active and extensive users of the social media, especially Twitter, and many of his tweets are further broadcast by India’s mainstream media.
With elections for India’s 17th Lok Sabha set to start this month, the last six months have been crucial for the ruling party’s campaign to get re-elected, which centres around PM Modi. In late 2018, the BJP witnessed reverses in three of five state assembly (legislature) elections in heartland states that it ruled, as well as the incumbent BJP government’s final though interim budget in February 2018.
Of the PM’s last six months’ tweets, two subjects attracted the maximum retweets from followers–those related to the armed forces after the terror attack on a Central Reserve Police Force convoy in Pulwama in Jammu and Kashmir that killed 40 personnel in February 2019; and his national campaign ‘Main Bhi Chowkidar’ in response to Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s jibe “Chowkidar chor hai [the watchman is a thief]”.
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