Social media to be monitored for poll code violations: Telangana CEO

Hyderabad | Social media posts of political parties and groups in poll-bound Telangana will come under the Election Commission’s scanner to check for any objectionable content under the model code of conduct, state Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar has said.

An agency had been appointed in Telangana to help the CEO on social media issues and the EC at the national and the state level is in touch with companies such as Google and Facebook, which have assured cooperation in cases of violation of the model code of conduct (MCC), he said. Assembly elections are scheduled to be held in Telangana on December 7.

“We are working out the matrix right now on how to control social media (content violative of MCC)… we will put some keywords which indicate violation of MCC… an appeal or an offer of money with catchphrases. we will scan through various websites, the CEO told PTI. The official said Telangana Director General of Police M. Mahendar Reddy has also offered help of the Cyber wing in taking action in cases of violation of the code.

“The source will be identified and action will be taken against him under the relevant sections of IPC and cyber crimes also,” he said. According to him, the guidelines for social media are exactly same as that of print and electronic media.

Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar said they will keep an eye on bulk messaging sent through social media or the traditional way with a malafide intention. Besides monitoring, a Facebook page under the name Chief Electoral officer Telangana has been created to update news and initiatives by the EC to reach out to voters.

The page had already clocked over 9.70 lakh views as of October 11, Kumar said. Around 90 percent of followers are less than 34 years of age and majority of whom are below 24, he added.

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