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Mumbai Police in hot pursuit of social media trolls

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Brutally targeted from various quarters after the death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, the Mumbai Police has now decided to hit back at the invisible army of social media trolls on various platforms, an official said here on Tuesday.

Cyber Cell Deputy Commissioner of Police Rashmi Karandikar said that several social media account holders are trolling the Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook using abusive language against him and the police force.

“Most of these accounts are fake… We will be taking action against all these fake account holders. Last month, another FIR was registered against a culprit who used a morphed image of the official Twitter account of the city Police Commissioner,” Karandikar said, adding a probe is underway in both matters.

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The developments came around 110 days after Sushant Singh’s death, coinciding with the AIIMS’ report that has ruled out all speculation alleging the actor was murdered.

The AIIMS’ report was widely welcomed by the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi constituents Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress who decried the manner in which “the state government and Mumbai Police were sought to be maligned” in the matter.

“We are not at all surprised by this… It was also the finding of the Cooper Hospital team,” Singh reacted to the AIIMS conclusions, while the MVA partners have demanded a SIT probe into the entire trolling business.

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Police sources said that there may be around 80,000-1,00,000 such ‘fake accounts’ created on various social media platforms after the actor’s death June 14 and some are allegedly being shut down now.

As per the Cyber Police’s preliminary analysis, the slanderous or abusive posts were uploaded from India and even several countries in Europe, Scandinavia, south-east Asia and other global locations targeting the Mumbai Police.

Congress Spokesperson Sachin Sawant and Shiv Sena leader Kishore Tiwari have lauded the police initiative for probing the social media menace that was encountered in the past nearly four months since the actor’s death.

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“I welcome the decision… Soon I will share very crucial information on this with the government on the social media accounts which were solely generated by the BJP IT Team to promote the ‘conspiracy theory’ in the Sushant Singh case and defame Maharashtra,” Sawant said in a statement.

Tiwari said that the social media posts were “directly interfering” with the investigations of Mumbai Police, and later the CBI, ED and NCB, besides the country’s judicial processes and the Cyber Police must act accordingly.

“There were blatantly fake expert opinions, imaginary scenarios concocted, and some television channels also promoted such frauds on their talk-shows… However, the Sushant Singh murder theory has fallen flat, while the so-called ‘morgue visit’ by Rhea Chakraborty has disappeared into thin air,” Tiwari told IANS.

The police are confident of making a few arrests in the cases which could attract a jail sentence of upto five years.  –ians/qn/in

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