On October 4, users worldwide faced outage of several services owned by Facebook Inc., including social media platforms Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. It took several hours for the services to go up again. In an official statement, Facebook said, “Our engineering teams have learned that configuration changes on the backbone routers that coordinate network traffic between our data centres caused issues that interrupted this communication. This disruption to network traffic had a cascading effect on the way our data centres communicate, bringing our services to a halt.”
However, Congress leaders and supporters blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Indian government for the outage. They alleged that the services went down as a part of a conspiracy to curb the popularity of Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi and to ensure information about the Lakhimpur incident does not go out in public. They meant this in all seriousness.
Vinay Kumar Dokania, National Co-Coordinator Congress Social Media, said, “Whatsapp, Facebook r most widely used apps in India. Both #WhatsAppDown & #facebookdown for more than 3hours now, the longest since last time memory serves me. Does one smell a conspiracy by Modi frnd Zuckerberg to prevent the brutal #lakhimpur_farmer_massacre video from going viral?”
In a now-deleted tweet, Congress leader Udit Raj said, “It seems FC [FB], Whatapp [WhatsApp] & Instagram are deliberately blocked by the govt to contain the movement of Smt Priyanka Gandhi & Opposition and farmers.”
Udit Raj is part of the ‘agitation committee’ Congress set up under leadership of veteran leader Digvijaya Singh. Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s daughter Priyanka Gandhi Vadra is also one of the members along with Udit Raj. Udit Raj believes Facebook servers crashed to ‘contain’ Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s ‘movements’.
Rohan Gupta, Chairman, Social Media Department, Indian National Congress, said, “WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram outage was coincidence or an experiment?”
Pankhuri Pathak, Vice-Chairperson Social Media UPCC, said, “WhatsApp and Facebook never faced outage for such a long duration. They go down on their own, or it was done to suppress the truth of the Lakhimpur Farmer massacre? Was it to stop the new video from getting viral?”
UP East Youth Congress wrote, “The video of the murder has emerged. Sahib [PM Modi] has a visit to Lucknow tomorrow. Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, everything is closed. Or is it done intentionally? You decide!!”
Though the company has clarified that it was a technical fault that led to the worldwide outage of the services, Congress leaders and supporters are trying to implicate that the Indian government intentionally got Facebook servers down in India to suppress the voice of Congress leaders, especially Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.