Ranchi: On February 22, when the news of National Health Mission’s vacancy (30 positions) for Community Health Officer (CHO), which was reserved for people of Jharkhand, was filled up by candidates hailing from Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, got flashed. Then several people including Giridih JMM MLA Sudivya Sonu, Tweeted, tagging Chief Minister Hemant Soren asked for action on the issue, and within 24 hours a probe was ordered into the matter, while the chief minister assured that the officials involved would be punished for the act.
A young doctor, Aditi Kashyap was travelling alone from Ranchi to Deoghar, when some policemen in civil uniform, chased 18 kilometers and stopped the car of Dr Kashyap in Giridih for some overtaking issue. They not only damaged her car but also beat her driver with the butt of the police rifle.
The doctor tweeted about this incident to Health Minister Banna Gupta and CM Soren from the roadside. And here also, within a day, the two policemen got suspended for their terrorising act.
These are a few incidents, in the everyday governance of Hemant Soren’s 58-day-old government. As a consequence hundreds of health, education and law and order related issues have been immediately sorted out with the direct intervention of Chief Minister Office (CMO), Jharkhand.
To talk on the swift action by Hemant Soren government using Twitter, the microblogging site, eNewsroom contacted a member of Chief Minister Hemant Soren’s digital media communications team, who requesting anonymity said, “Twitter is a global platform which if used judiciously can be an effective tool to improve governance. Even before becoming the Chief Minister, Hemant Soren was one of the few leaders who addressed Twitter Chaupal in March 2019 to reach out to people, both offline and online.”
Jharkhand CM’s digital communication team member further informed, “The CM strongly believes that a people welfare centric approach is necessary and that vision should also be clearly understood by all the pillars of government.”
“Hemant Sir personally monitors all issues taken up or instructed by him through Twitter to ensure compliance and service delivery is strengthened and people start believing that governance is for them and led by them,” he said.
He also mentioned that how during the previous Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government led by Raghubar Das government was using social media for propaganda and even Indian Administrative (IAS) officers were reprimanded by Election Commission of India (ECI) for getting involved. “So now the same DCs (deputy commissioners) who were reprimanded by ECI for participating in political propaganda on social media during the PM’s visit in 2019 September are taking necessary steps at appropriate levels.”
However, it is not going well with opposition BJP and Babulal Marandi, who recently joined the saffron brigade. Marandi said, “Hemant Soren is running his government on Twitter, there is no work visible on ground, it is a Twitter Sarkar.”
To which, some netizens commented, “It is not that government is being run on Twitter, but grievances are being addressed which is benefiting Jharkhand’s people.”
And obviously, youth is at the centre of these exercise, “Youth in Jharkhand in spite of limited internet connectivity are using social media platforms. Twitter gives an instant connect and also marks accountability as well as responsibility in real time,” CM’s digital team member added.
Political analyst Vishnu Rajgariya believes that using Twitter to redress grievances is sign of a good governance. “The positive use of technology and social media is always welcome, as it will bring transparency and reduce corruption.”
Rajgariya played down on the ‘Twitter Sarkar’ jibe by BJP leaders. “If public work is getting done, then there is no rationale in questioning use of Twitter or any other platform. And during Suresh Prabhu tenure as Railway Minister, he used to respond on Twitter and people were also Tweeting about the problems they faced while travelling.”