Terrorists love Twitter but for Jama'at-ud-Da'wah and 26/11 terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed today is a bad day with his handle being suspended.
Saeed who has a free run in Pakistan with his anti-India propaganda had a good run on Twitter as well. Under the veil of speaking about the cause of Islam, Saeed was also very vocal on his Twitter account spreading an anti-India message.
His last few tweets in fact have been extremely vocal and the desperation was showing. He kept giving a call on his Twitter account to launch a final Jihad against India and to a large extent the gamble did pay off and the world witnessed his bloody actions in Kashmir last week.
How it happened?
His Twitter account was viewed by the Indian agencies for a considerable amount of time. However in the aftermath of the recent attack what the agencies also found was that he had become extremely vocal.
The bigger problem was that he began luring the youth through his messages. There was a major outcry in the media and also the Indian establishment informed Twitter about the dangers of this handle which led to the suspension.
Why do terrorists love social media?
Terror has come a full cycle. They today prefer the educated class over the run of the mill foot soldier. Moreover on Twitter they seem to get away with anything they say and this has proven to be an ideal platform for them to spread their message.
Global statistics today would show that out of every 100 recruitments, 70 take place online today. The posting of literature and videos on the social media has made it a favourable platform for terrorists.
In the case of Saeed, he may not have sounded too brutal as the al Qaeda or the ISIS would, but his messages were extremely powerful. His tweet intervals were also fast and he focused heavily on India which the agencies felt was getting out of hand.
Pros and Cons
There are many pros and few cons in suspending the Twitter account of a terrorist. The pros are that the terrorist will not be able to give any mindless jihad calls for sometime. A large follower base which relies on the handle of a terrorist for information will no longer have access.
Sometimes Intelligence agencies just let terrorists speak their mind on a social network. This gives the agencies a fair idea of what the terrorist is up to. Sometimes these accounts are a hub of information. Suspending an account could mean loss of that information. Although terrorists may not reveal intricate details of an attack their messages do give a fair information on what they are up to.
What next for Saeed?
It is indeed a set back for Saeed. However it is just a matter of time before he gets back with another handle. This has been seen in several cases and Saeed too would do something similar. However Saeed will bear in mind that the entire world is not Pakistan.
He cannot get away with anything. The US has taken note of India's request to suspend his handle and the improving relations between the two nations would cause him some worry.
However for the time being before he creates a new handle his supporters will tweet on his behalf. It would not entirely be the same for Saeed as messages coming out of his own handle would have a bigger impact. For now India has managed to put him on the back foot.