India’s animated video wars cause stir on the campaign trail

An animated video released by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party was taken down from Instagram after it sparked a backlash for demeaning Muslims. The removal put a spotlight on what has been called a war of animated videos between the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the opposition Congress party, notes FRANCE 24’s Leela Jacinto.

Barely a day after it was released, an animated video posted on the official account of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was taken down from Instagram.

It was removed after many Instagram users flagged it over hate speech concerns.

But although the video is not available on Instagram, the animated clip is still circulating widely on WhatsApp and other messenger platforms. Policing hate speech these days is a challenge that security experts liken to a game of whack-a-mole.

While the video is certainly incendiary, it drew particular attention since it was not created by some overenthusiastic BJP supporter. That can happen on the campaign trail in many democracies, and such incidents typically see the political party issuing a statement clarifying that it was not an official campaign video. This signals the party’s disapproval of the messaging.

In sharp contrast, the script of the latest BJP video was in fact much a point-by-point reiteration of a speech Modi himself delivered on the campaign trail last month in the western state of Rajasthan.

Oh yes, it does. A particularly popular animated video from the Congress party is called “Washing Machine”.

Read more on FRANCE 24 English

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