As India-China tensions continue, sources have revealed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has deleted his account on Chinese social media app Weibo.
The move comes two days after India banned 59 Chinese apps including TikTok, Weibo and CamScanner citing data privacy concerns.
Sources told India Today TV, “As soon as the decision was taken to disallow Chinese 59 apps in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi decided that he would be quitting Weibo, which he had joined a few years ago.”
The sources added that there was a delay in the deletion of PM Modi’s account from Weibo’s end due to its user policy regarding verified accounts and as a result, India had to initiate an official process.
As soon as the decision was taken to disallow Chinese 59 Apps in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi decided that he would be quitting Weibo, which he had joined a few years ago: Sources pic.twitter.com/vDnIZwEqyF
— ANI (@ANI) July 1, 2020
“For VIP accounts, Weibo has a more complex procedure to quit which is why the official process was initiated. For reasons best known to the Chinese, there was great delay in granting this basic permission,” sources said.
“PM Modi had 115 posts on Weibo. It was decided to manually delete them and after much effort 113 posts were removed,” they added. The two posts left were posts where PM Modi had shared photos with Chinese President Xi Jinping. On Weibo, it is difficult to remove posts with photos of their President which is why the two posts still remained.
However, now all posts have been deleted.
While Weibo cannot be accessed from India, several media reports have found PM Modi’s Weibo profile page to be missing and posts from the account are gone.
Sina Weibo which is similar to Twitter in China has millions of users and all embassies in Beijing besides several world leaders including Prime Minister Modi had opened their accounts on the social media platform to interact with the Chinese people.
PM Modi’s account on Weibo was created on May 4, 2015, ahead of his visit to China later that month. PM Modi had over 2.4 lakh followers on the Chinese app. No posts related to the recent military confrontation were posted on his page.
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) May 4, 2015
Earlier, Indian embassy officials in Beijing had alleged that the speech of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to chief ministers on June 18 about the Galwan Valley clash, as well as the comments by the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, had been deleted from two Chinese social media accounts, including Weibo.