Ayodhya verdict: netizens play it cool

Social networking platforms buzzed with messages about the need to exercise restraint

A sombre, sedate and mature social media ensured that the Ayodhya verdict delivered by the Supreme Court on Saturday morning didn’t lead to any frayed tempers in the city.

Hours after the SC notice about the pronouncement of the judgment became public knowledge, social media was abuzz with messages about the need for restraint. The calls for restraint were tempered with threats of surveillance on Friday night.

“Restrict posting rights for the next few days, to avoid unnecessary problem. Many groups have resorted to this strategy, to prevent members posting communal or inflammatory messages,” was the message shared in one of the groups. By morning, many of the groups changed the settings where only the admins could post information. The day was not without funny moments, where fake news about all social media messages being screened by Central intelligence agencies and police began to spread, before being called out.

As the operative portion of the judgment circulated around 11.15 a.m., there were messages about the arrest of a youth for inflammatory messages in Meerut. Hours later, #hindumuslimbhaibhai began trending on social media. Some of the Twitter users reported a time lag on posts and replies.

Voices of sanity

However, the voices of sanity prevailed, including this one: “Not forwarding any WhatsApp messages will be the biggest service we will be doing to the nation today (sic)”.

“The Supreme Court is the highest court of the country. Let’s respect its verdict. Let there NOT be any celebration or outward expression of disappointment. Let’s make sure we do not hurt the sentiments of others. The issues that have divided us and hindered our progress for decades should now be buried. Let’s move on (sic),” wrote a Twitter user, Nusrath Mehdi Khan.

By afternoon, all the misgivings about fear, strife, the imposition of Section 144 and closure of schools gave way to relief as the city stayed calm.

The drama soon shifted to the strike by Telangana State Road Transport Corporation staff and their efforts to reach the Tank Bund.

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Printable version | Jul 14, 2020 6:38:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/ayodhya-verdict-netizens-play-it-cool/article29933642.ece

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