Disturbing trend of some govt officials using social media to spread hate material in Gilgit-Baltistan

GILGIT/ISLAMABAD: The Gilgit-Baltistan Police recently arrested two police officials for engaging in hate speech on social media. The two officials, unnamed in the media, were arrested after the recent sectarian tension that resolved after an agreement reached between two clerics.

There are reports that a list of 18 digital hatemongers has been prepared and they will be brough to the book, through joint efforts of FIA, GB Police, and other relevant departments.

On May 21, the Deputy Commissioner of Diamer directed relevant departments to forward lists of government employees using social media for spreading defamatory content, hate materials, hate speeches, sectarian violence and any other activities which can disturb the public peace and tranquility in Diamer/Gilgit-Baltistan.

Copy of letter sent by DC Diamer

“In the past also, during controversies, it has been observed that government official engage in sharing incendiary remarks, hateful comments, threats, warnings and defamatory content directed at various groups. A quick look at their profiles reveals that they are working for one or the other government department. The fact that they do so with complete immunity is really disturbing”, said Ahmad Shah, a concerned citizen, when approached by Pamir Times for comment.

When asked to elaborate, he added, “When a KIU employee was accused of sexual harassment, some of the most hateful comments directed at the victim came from government officials, whose screenshots are also circulated on social media”.

A few weeks ago, a similar direction was also released by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, warning government officials across the region to stop using social media for hatemongering.

With the arrest of the two police officials, it is being hoped that the government will be more vigilant and laws will be implemented effectively.

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