Twitter’s rather explicit hatred for Hindus and India was once again on bright display when on August 5, the micro-blogging site took it upon itself to adjudicate as to whether a display of Bhagwan Ram’s video from Times Square, New York on their platform was hurtful to a section of people. As such, an ignorant Twitter flagged the content and censored it, claiming that the footage showing a billboard of Shri Ram and his proposed Mandir, along with the Indian tricolour fluttering in the display, was “potentially sensitive content.”
Jagdish Sewhani, the chairman of the Ram Janma Bhoomi Shilanyas Celebrations Committee of USA, tweeted a nine-second video of a display in New York’s Times Square. “I was so proud to see our Ram Mandir and Ramji in Times Square today. Let’s celebrate this once in a lifetime event tonight at 7.30 p.m.,” his tweet read. However, the video attached below the tweet was censored by Twitter with a message which read, “The following media includes potentially sensitive content.”
— Jagdish Sewhani (@JagdishSewhani) August 5, 2020
After heavy outrage on Twitter by Hindus who were shocked seeing the ignorance, or perhaps even open hatred of the platform for Hindu deities, the video was restored to its original form, and the “sensitive content” message was removed from over it. What was “potentially sensitive” about an image of Shri Ram, his proposed Mandir at Ayodhya and the Indian tricolour is bewildering. Such open display of Hinduphobia by the micro-blogging platform was given a miss by nobody, and this wrongful censoring of a Hindu deity’s image just adds to a list of instances when Twitter has institutionally displayed its bias against Hindus.
Meanwhile, even as Twitter thought it fit to censor a Hindu God, images displaying hateful messages by “Muslim advocacy groups” were allowed to be displayed in all their grandeur on the platform. A particular ‘Indian American Muslim Council’ displayed hateful posters, which included comparing PM Modi to Hitler and also likening the RSS to the infamous KKK. A hateful message against Indians also displayed by the Islamist group said, “Desi people in US can’t talk about diversity in US and support fascism and supremacy in India.”
Live from Times Square.
— IndianAmericanMuslimCouncil (@IAMCouncil) August 6, 2020
The ‘South Asia Solidarity Initiative’ meanwhile, posted a probing question on Twitter, which read, “How many Muslims have to die for your temples?” This too was not censored by Twitter. While hate speech gets a free run on the platform, Hinduphobes employed by the company get to censor the image of Bhagwan Ram as “potentially sensitive.”
— South Asia Solidarity Initiative (@SASIinNYC) August 5, 2020
That Twitter is biased against conservative and right-wing voices is a fact known to all. In fact, by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s own admission, it has been made clear that the work environment at Twitter is hostile, since almost all the employees of the platform are inclined to the Left. As a consequence, conservative voices on the platform are continuously stifled, and many right-wing accounts are also banned without much thought.
For Twitter to censor the video of a Hindu deity, however, is a new low, and cements apprehensions of many that the platform is not just anti-Right, but also grossly anti-Hindu in its approach.