Staff Reporter

The names of 59,000-odd members have vanished

Not much has happened despite complaints

to Facebook

BANGALORE: The online group on the Facebook network that catapulted the Pink Chaddi Campaign to new heights has been hacked repeatedly in the past two weeks and renamed with racist and misogynist tones. Even after several complaints to Facebook administrators, not much has happened.

Hackers have vented their fury on the Facebook group which captured the world’s attention with an imaginative and subversive campaign which entailed a puckish sense of humour and a big point made to the moral police.

The famous Facebook group, Consortium of Pub-going, Loose and Forward Women, which had become the face of the real and virtual revolution against rightwing moral policing in the State, was bizarrely rechristened by hackers as “A good Bong is a dead one.”

Other names included the “Nathuram Godse Appreciation Society”, “Burn Graham Staines Society” and “Pro-aversion” society and featured pornographic pictures and lewd commentary.

The group encouraged women to send pink chaddis to the Sri Ram Sene to protest the infamous Mangalore pub attack and its threats against those celebrating Valentine’s Day.

In what was widely acknowledged as a successful campaign, the pink chaddi idea effectively took the wind off the saffron sails.

Campaign over, the group’s activities subsided. The recent hacking disrupted the site and the names of a staggering 59,000-odd members have vanished.

Despite a month of sending of emails to Facebook about the group being hacked continuously,

Nisha Susan, creator of the group, who also started the Pink Chaddi Campaign, has received no response from Facebook. “We got automatically generated emails from Facebook saying that they were looking into it, and then emails saying that Facebook could not be hacked,” she said.

Account disabled

A few days ago, her account was disabled by Facebook, because as the creator of the group she was seen as abusing her account.

“It does not take too many people to hack the group; it could even be one person,” said Ms. Susan, who is amused at the erratic content by the hackers.

For example, “A good Bong is a dead one” attacks many Bengali women in the group. Calling themselves the Ravana Sene, the hackers threaten: “You will never recover this group and life in India will get increasingly harder as groups like Sri Rama Sene see that it is more fun to be like Ravana Sene”, apart from obscenities.

The last time Ms. Susan was able to access it there were 135 administrators. “It means the trolls have taken over,” she says.

]\Meanwhile various other groups supporting the Pink Chaddi campaign and the Consortium have sprouted, created not only from India, but also by people from the U.K.

“I think the hackers might have been laid off, which is why they have so much time on their hands,” says Ms. Susan, who doesn’t think that there is a need to panic. “We can create another group,” she said simply.

New campaign

Soon another campaign initiated by her will kick off. “This is Indian Culture” campaign will have people posting videos of them doing what they think is Indian culture and will be hosted online.