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DMW report: No Pakistani declared anti-state, says Fawad

August 14, 2021

By news report

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry Friday said nobody from Pakistan was declared anti-state in the Digital Media Wing’s (DMW)’ report, issued a couple of days ago.

“The analysis of Rana Sanaullah, Khurram Dastigeer and Shahid Khakan Abbasi reflected that they were not well aware of the latest technology and having lack of enough knowledge,” he said in a statement.

He said unfortunately the political parties did not have their political [research] wings so that they could help their leadership to understand an issue in depth.

The wing, in its report, provided data of 150 trends that were running on the social media networking site twitter, he said, adding a total of 3.7 million tweets were posted to build an anti-Pakistan narrative.

People of India, Afghanistan and others took part to push that narrative online, he disclosed.

He said India did use bot technology to promote anti-Pakistan tweets.

Fawad said the report did not comment on the people living in Pakistan, clarifying, “If someone will be taking part in #SanctionPakistan trending right now on social media and opposing it - then it does not mean that they indulged in an anti-state activity.”

The media wing of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM) had participated in spreading and posting anti-state trends on social media.

The data on PTM’s role in supporting the anti-state narrative was included in DMW report which could be analysed by people themselves.

He said the real issue is who was posting and supporting anti-state narrative. PML-N leadership should better hire the services of any expert to educate them about the contents of report. The leaders unfamiliar with technology could also contact ministry’s digital media wing that was set up to guide them.

Earlier, the PMLN had slammed the report saying it had equated Pakistan's opposition politicians and journalists with India and Israel without any proof.

Addressing a press conference here, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi flanked by Khurran Dastgir Khan, Rana Sanaullah and Marriyum Aurangzeb said the 135 page report had put Pakistan's opposition politicians and journalists on a par with India and Israel.

He said the entire report sought to demonise and issue edicts based on assumptions without analysing the content of tweets used as basis for these accusations, reports the media.

Abbasi said the map published in the report shows Kashmir as a part of India which was the most outrageous and unforgivable mistake and yet there was no accountability for it.

This, he said, was because none of the government ministers even read the report and even if they did, they didn't have the intelligence to know what was wrong.

He mocked the fact that the government had hired a Canadian company to do this research and lacked the capacity to do anything themselves.

But when the company was contacted, they denied that they provided any data which means the data was either stolen or was fictitious.

These actions, he said, would affect Pakistan for decades, as this government had no vision or policy on Afghanistan which was going to shape regional dynamics for decades to come.

Abbasi said the report was nothing but distraction from the failures of the PTI government at every level. He pointed out that even after thousands of lives sacrificed and billions of dollars lost by Pakistan in the war on terror in Afghanistan, the world today viewed Pakistan as an equal stake holder.

He condemned demonising Afrasiab Khattak, Farhatullah Babar, Bushra Gohar and others.

Abbasi pointed out that the PTI info minister lied about the report on national television when he had nothing to say to defend it.

Tweets that criticise government and call out its blunders are not anti-state but pro-state, he said.