Most of the uploaded content comprises morphed photographs of religious places, books, symbols and statues

While continuing the hunt for persons wanted in the recent communal clashes in the old city, the Hyderabad police are waging a cyber war as well against those trying to spread religious hatred using the Internet.

A team of young IT experts formed by the Cyber Crime Wing of the Central Crime Station is working round-the-clock to identify objectionable text, photographs and visuals posted on the Internet that have the potential to trigger communal trouble. Since the outbreak of communal violence at Madannapet and Saidabad, they succeeded in getting ‘hate content' deleted from nearly 25 postings mainly on Facebook and YouTube.

Most of the content uploaded comprised morphed photographs of religious places, books, symbols and statues. The common pattern is superimposing religious symbols to ridicule and hurt the sentiments of others.

Similar incendiary morphed images posted on a social website sparked off communal violence in Sangareddy, 50 km from here a few weeks ago. A complaint of similar nature was lodged with the Hussainialam police station two days ahead of Hanuman Jayanti.

Already on its toes with clashes in Sangareddy, the city police didn't want to leave anything to chance and transferred the case to the Cyber Crime Station of the CCS to trace persons responsible for posting offensive and morphed photograph on Facebook.

It was posted by a person called Vishal Tagore but the investigators were clueless about his address. They immediately contacted the Facebook management and got the image removed. Even as investigators suspected the possibility of more such attempts being made, clashes broke out at Madannapet after a communal incident was reported.

The higher-ups immediately constituted a team of experts and put them on the job of monitoring social websites. “Some started uploading visuals telecast by a news channel which highlighted violence by people of a particular religion. In one case, the video footage was of more than 10 minutes duration,” a police officer said.

Notices sent

Police sent notices to the social websites and YouTube and got the photographs and video footage deleted. “We are writing to the persons hosting websites to ensure that their websites are not used for creating religious animosity,” the police said. They are also trying to track the persons who are uploading such images with the help of social networking sites.

Not much headway could be made in tracing the persons playing mischief.

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