The entire nation is in a state of shock following the sudden and untimely demise of India’s former External Affairs Minister and one of the most respected stateswoman, Sushma Swaraj. She passed away last night after suffering a cardiac arrest. Even in her last moments, she invested all emotions on the nation’s well being as she reveled in the scrapping of Article 370 as she saw a better future for all of India. While she is being remembered for her numerous deeds, her most special quality- the ability to connect with the ordinary citizens is what is being highlighted. This was due to her interactive relationship with the citizens, which had led her to be crowned as the unofficial Queen of troll shutters.
Sushma Swaraj was known for her impeccable wit and quick response on social media. Whenever she had been subject to unnecessary trolls, she had never shied away from shutting them up, in a cool and collected manner. Defending her country, her ideology and her party, she had calmly shown the trolls that their opinion is irrelevant, on more occasions than one.
Once, a Twitter user asked Sushma Swaraj why she calls herself Chowkidaar.
Ma',m we thought you were our Foreign Minister. The only one most sensible in BJP. Why do you call yourself Chowkidar.
— GT (@engineer_gt) March 30, 2019
To which she calmly replied, “Because I am doing Chowkidari of Indian interests and Indian nationals abroad.”
Because I am doing Chowkidari of Indian interests and Indian nationals abroad. https://t.co/dCgiBPsagz
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 30, 2019
Then a user came forward saying, “Certainly it’s not Sushma Swaraj who is doing this tweets. Some PR guy is doing his / her duty for what they being paid for!”
Certainly it’s not Sushma Swaraj who is doing this tweets. Some PR guy is doing his / her duty for what they being paid for !!
— Samit (@samitpadhy) March 31, 2019
To which Sushma Swaraj wittily replied, “Rest assured – it’s me, not my ghost.”
Rest assured – it's me, not my ghost. https://t.co/qxCeKUJ0uJ
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 31, 2019
Similarly, in 2017, a Twitter user named Karan Saini said in an attempt to troll Sushma Swaraj and her brilliant work as foreign minister,“@SushmaSwaraj I am stuck on mars, food sent via Mangalyaan (987 days ago), is running out, when is Mangalyaan-II being sent ? @isro.”
It must be noted here that during her tenure as the Foreign Minister, Sushma Swaraj became known for extending help promptly to Indians facing problems abroad, including when someone asked for help through twitter. Saini thus posted a witty tweet about the same. However, Sushma Swaraj was equal to the task and she replied, “Even if you are stuck on the Mars, Indian Embassy there will help you.”
Even if you are stuck on the Mars, Indian Embassy there will help you. https://t.co/Smg1oXKZXD
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) June 8, 2017
More so than the usual trolling, she had also effectively dealt with people who had been borderline abusive and derogatory. A Twitter troll, Irfan A Khan, posted a shameful reply on Swaraj’s tweet condoling Garg’s death. Khan wrote, “Aap ki bhi boht yaad ayegi ek din #SheilaDixit Ji ki tarah AmmA (You will be missed one day like Sheila Dixit)” in a tweet that has now been deleted.
It is important to mention here that the former Delhi Chief Minister, Sheila Dikshit passed away recently. Therefore, by posting this reply, the troll was clearly wishing death upon Sushma Swaraj. However, Swaraj maintained her calm and composure and took down the troll with a graceful reply.
Sushma Swaraj replied, “Is bhawana ke liye apko mera agrim dhanyawad. I thank you in anticipation for this kind thought.” Therefore, while the troll had crossed all limits of decency, Sushma Swaraj did not lose her temper and was able to shut him up in a brilliant way.
This kind of strength, grace and wit throughout her political career, and her tolerance and wit even even while facing obnoxious trolls, made senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj’s popularity soar even more as many referred to her as the first ‘People’s foreign minister’ India ever had. Besides brilliantly carrying out crucial diplomatic meetings and tasks, Sushma Swaraj brought even more to the table as External Affairs Minister. With a motherly demeanour she took the initiative to help Indians abroad as well foreigners who wished for medical visas and other forms of assistance from her ministry.