December 16, 2018

Fake social media accounts casting shadow over Pakistani politics

News Source: Express Tribune

 

Spreading fake news through social media platforms is not something new to Pakistani politics.

Imran Khan’s recent revocation of Farooq Bandial’s membership from the party following a social media backlash after the latter’s picture appeared with the PTI chairman.

Bandial was convicted of raping prominent Pakistani film star Jharna Basak popularly known as Shabnam, currently residing in Bangladesh.

A new controversy arose on social media after Shabnam praised Imran for cancelling Bandial’s party membership in a tweet, which reportedly came from a fake doctored twitter account impersonating the actress.


Fake twitter accounts have long been used in the country’s politics to manipulate opinion and target political opponents.

A host of prominent politicians including Imran, Shehbaz Sharif, Meryam Nawaz, Farhatullah Babar, Ayesha Gulalai and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, have fake twitter handles operating on social media platforms such as Twitter.

These accounts are operated by fake trolls who are falsifying opinions and perceptions of the population by impersonating prominent politicians.

A fake micro-blogging account of Shehbaz Sharif criticised the PTI government’s performance in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P).

Here are some of the fake accounts:

With the elections around the corner, impersonation of politicians through fake Twitter handles poses a grave danger to the country’s democratic process.

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