New Delhi: Politics over the bus controversy in Uttar Pradesh raged on between Congress and BJP on Twitter as well.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra had offered to send 1,000 buses to ferry migrant workers wanting to return to their villages. After a war of words, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath accepted the offer but then claimed that most of the vehicles listed in Congress’ document were not really buses, beginning a fresh controversy.
Cyclone Amphan was the other much-discussed topic as the super cyclone made its landfall in West Bengal today.
See what other storms are brewing on Twitter today:
Congressman Raj Babbar appeals to the Yogi government to allow the passage of the buses meant to transport migrant workers.
जिन बसों को श्रमिक भाइयों के लिए @priyankagandhi जी ने भेजा-उन्हें अब तक रोके रखा गया है। अब यूपी सरकार की तरफ़ से ख़बर है कि सभी बसों की जांच हो गयी जिनमें 879 के काग़ज़ात सही पाए गए।
अगर आत्मसंतुष्टि हो गयी हो तो श्रमिक भाइयों की मदद के लिए इन 879 बसों को तुरंत रवाना किया जाए। pic.twitter.com/j2SjeK2c67
— Raj Babbar (@RajBabbarMP) May 19, 2020
BJP IT cell head Amit Malviya takes a dig at Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on the buses arranged by her. And even invokes her brother Rahul Gandhi for good measure.
Please share a thought for everyone who thought Priyanka Vadra is the ‘silver bullet’ to revive the Congress. She is giving tough competition to her brother, though… 😂#CongressKaBusGhotala #PriyankaVadraBusGhotala
— Amit Malviya (@amitmalviya) May 20, 2020
Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill explained the refugee crisis in a rather innovative manner and compared it to the situation in UP.
Normally countries shut their borders for foreigners to prevent infiltration, refugee settlement but BJP UP Govt by not allowing entry to buses ferrying migrants has set a new record of becoming first Govt which has shut its borders for Indians within India !! #MigrantsOnTheRoad
— Jaiveer Shergill (@JaiveerShergill) May 20, 2020
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot sees trouble looming with cyclone Amphan.
Much concerned about the safety of our people in Odisha, West Bengal & other states as #CycloneAmphan is likely to make a landfall on the eastern coast of India. Hope all are evacuated to safer areas. Wish & pray all remain safe.
— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) May 20, 2020
“Armchair thinker” Ramesh Srivats proves why he calls himself that, as he cracks a rather poor pun on cyclone Amphan. We expected better from a brand/media consultant
Who names a cyclone Amphan?
"Hello, I Amphan."
"No, you are not fun."
— Ramesh Srivats (@rameshsrivats) May 20, 2020
Bihar’s leader of opposition Tejashwi Yadav (RJD) slams chief minister Nitish Kumar on the low Covid-19 testing rate in the state.
तमाम दावों के बावजूद बिहार में कोरोना जाँच पूरे देश में सबसे कम क्यों? 15 वर्षीय सरकार बताये आख़िर विफलता का क्या कारण है?
अगर जाँचकिट नहीं हैं तो सरकारी विफलता है और अगर उपलब्धता के बावजूद जाँच नहीं हो रही तो सबसे बड़ी विफलता है।
— Tejashwi Yadav (@yadavtejashwi) May 20, 2020
Omar Abdullah comments on a news story, which reports that the Madhya Pradesh Police apologised to a lawyer for beating him up after mistaking him for a Muslim. The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister recalls Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi’s comment that India is ‘heaven for Muslims’.
“Sorry we thought you were a Muslim”. That’s all it takes to get beaten by the police, the suspicion that one is a Muslim. This is what the union minister meant when he said “India is heaven for Muslims”. https://t.co/fztUfnaqVc
— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) May 20, 2020
CPI leader Sitaram Yechury launches a sharp attack on the PM CARES fund
At least now Modi must release the booty in his private trust fund to States to transport our migrant families home with no charges. https://t.co/aNxv6eK8Vk
— Sitaram Yechury (@SitaramYechury) May 19, 2020
In an oopsie daisy moment, Bollywood actor Shabana Azmi shares a ‘heartbreaking’ photo of migrant kids, however, some smart users quickly pointed something out.
— Azmi Shabana (@AzmiShabana) May 19, 2020
Congress spokesperson Sanjay Jha wants a political renaissance in the country.
Majority of Indian politicians ( from all parties) are crorepatis. Lockdown makes no difference to them.
The common man on the street is being devastated. Today, Uber has sacked 3000. Where do they go? What do they eat?
India needs a new politics.
— Sanjay Jha (@JhaSanjay) May 19, 2020
Columnist Tavleen Singh slammed the ‘so-called’ media for their biased reporting on migrant workers crisis in the country.
There is a ‘concern’ now being shown by TV anchors for migrant workers that is obscene. Shame on them for shedding fake tears for people who have suffered because the media failed them when they really needed support.
— Tavleen Singh (@tavleen_singh) May 19, 2020
As the economy bears devastating losses due to the looming crisis, here’s what author Chetan Bhagat thinks is the real ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ of the country.
We wrecked our economy. Because:
1. We cared about putting Pakistan down more
2. We cared about being one up on Muslims more
3. We worship vs holding governments accountable
4. Outdated economics
5. We feel all suffering is God given
6. We troll this reality check tweet too
— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) May 20, 2020
And actor Richa Chadha asks a burning question.
The ppl walking barefoot on the road, without food or water, penniless, hopeless and exhausted… when did they stop to take the survey? Or do they not count ? https://t.co/tBSvMu3JSa
— TheRichaChadha (@RichaChadha) May 20, 2020
Onto lighter things, how much do former mixed doubles partners and legendary tennis players Martina Hingis and Leander Paes, who’ve won 4 grand slams together, know about each other? Find out!
— Martina Hingis (@mhingis) May 18, 2020
Author Stephen King is known to tell horror stories with eerie ease, and he doesn’t fail here either.
Hey, MAGA fans! Almost 90,000 dead on your boy's watch. Is it enough yet, or do you need even more?
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) May 18, 2020
Seems like American TV show host Conan O’ Brien has succeeded at painting a more haunting picture than King with this tweet.
Troubling thought: What if these are the good old days?
— Conan O'Brien (@ConanOBrien) May 19, 2020
With inputs from Revathi Krishnan
Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it
India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.
But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.
ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.