RSS workers threaten RTI activist who exposed Maharashtra EC links to BJP IT cell

Saket Gokhale has earlier flagged transparency issues with PM-CARES fund and exposed the scam involved in the ventilators from the PM-CARES fund

saket gokhale

Journalist and RTI Activist Saket Gokhale and his mother were threatened today by RSS workers today at his place. They passed on a threat to his mother and raised ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans in front of his house. This incident has come to light as he tweeted a video of the same and demanded urgent assistance from Home Minister of Maharashtra, Anil Deshmukh.

In a series of tweets, he has also noted that he had received more than 130+ calls within 10 minutes from the BJP-RSS workers. He also has alleged that his phone number was leaked by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting wherein they have failed to ensure that his details are not revealed while about his RTI application.

 

No matter how many political twists the BJP gives, how many campaigns are run by Modi media, or how many threats I get from the sangh parivar: I will NEVER capitulate to Hindutva. India’s secularism & democracy are worth fighting for & dying for.- Saket Gokhale

In due course, an FIR was registered and the accused were booked based on the details of calls he had received in the day. He has been provided with protection by Thane Police as of now.

BJP IT Cell –  Election Commission Nexus

Yesterday, Saket had alleged that the Election Commission of India had hired the BJP IT Cell to manage its social media handle in Maharashtra in 2019 in the run-up to the Maharashtra State Assembly elections.

Through his social media accounts including Twitter and Facebook, Saket Gokhale has pointed out that the Chief Electoral Officer of Maharashtra reporting to the Election Commission of India had issued social media advertisements in 2019 with the address being mentioned as “202 Pressman House, Ville Parle, Mumbai” which belonged to Signpost India, an advertising company which was a government empaneled agency during the Devendra Fadnavis led BJP Government in the state.

Shocking details:Election Commission of India literally hired the BJP IT Cell for handling their social media in…

Posted by Saket Gokhale on Thursday, July 23, 2020

 

Interestingly, the same address was also used by a digital agency “Social Central” which was owned by Devang Dave – the National Convenor of IT & Social Media for BJP’s Youth Wing BJYM. Devang Dave was found to be a founder of many websites and pages supporting the BJP  including “The Fearless Indian” and “I Support Narendra Modi”.

“It is beyond SHOCKING that the Election Commission chose a BJP IT cell guy & his agency to handle their social media for Maharashtra elections.” Saket Gokhale

 

While Election Commission of India has been envisioned to be an independent institution that is entrusted to hold free and fair elections which holds the key to the very functioning of a democracy. This allegation has raised eyebrows as the idea of democracy itself might have been compromised.

Having taken note of the allegations, the spokesperson for the Election Commission of India has responded that it has demanded from the Chief Election Officer of Maharashtra a detailed report on the incident.

BJPs against Institutional functioning 

The present allegation is understood to have revealed yet another attack on the independent functioning of Democratic Institutions by BJP. The BJP is known to be notorious in terms of its attack on the institutions. It has attempted to either attack and dismantle major institutions like Planning Commission and UGC amongst others which secure the rights of the people and the constitutional values or have been trying to capture institutions through the appointment of its ideologues like in the case of judiciary and universities.

Previously, Saket Gokhale had also brought to light that the links of present Chief Justice of India SA Bobde with BJP when Bobde was seen riding a high-end motorcycle. Saket Gokhale had revealed that this high-end bike was seen riding was registered in the name of Rohit Sonbaji Musale, son of Sonba Musale – a BJP leader from Nagpur. Bobde was also a nominee for them in the 2014 assembly elections.

In 2019 Maharashtra State Legislative Assembly elections were held on 21 October. The ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena (SHS) won with a majority.

ZEE News targeted campaign against Saket Gokhale

In his series of tweets, he has also alleged Zee News had tried hard to push him to be live on their channel after running a targeted campaign against him earlier in the day. He had exposed the BJP IT Cell’s link with the Election Commission during Elections for Maharashtra State Assembly in 2019.

Saket Gokhale has also been central in bringing to light the opacity of PM CARES fund and also the PM CARES ventilator scam. Because of these exposes he has been at the receiving end of trolling at social media sites like Twitter but a media house like ZEE media going after an RTI activist and participating in slander is unethical, to say the least.

Read about: Corona Crisis & the Workers’ Movement- The labour report during the lockdown

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