Police on Saturday lodged an FIR against some IT firms on a complaint based on the sting operation by news portal ‘Cobrapost’, which claimed misuse of social media platforms in online campaigning for elections.

The FIR was lodged by IPS officer Amitabh Thakur, who alleged that many IT companies were making “criminal” and “improper” use of social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube etc to sway the minds of common people and electorate hence to cheat them, police said.

Cobrapost, in its sting, had claimed that IT companies were misusing social media platforms to artificially boost popularity of politicians and malign their rivals.

The FIR also mentioned those firms managing media campaign for BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, police said.

It alleged that these companies create fake profiles and try to generate an impression on voters’ minds through false ’likes’ and fan following as well as negative comments for the opponents.

In this way, they play with the basic tenets of Indian democracy and generate hate videos and messages, which, at times, even trigger riots, Thakur’s FIR alleged.

They use proxy codes on their computers, offshore IPs and servers to avoid tracing of the source, hack into the computers of other individuals and use Internet-based messaging system to circumvent TRAI, the FIR alleged.

The FIR was lodged under relevant sections of IPC, IT Act and Representation of People’s Act.

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