New Delhi, July 4: In a nation of 1.3 billion people, how do you gauge people's sentiment? Simple, visit the micro-blogging site--Twitter--to know what Indians are talking about.
Maybe, Twitter won't reflect the pan-India view--as only an estimated 450 million people have access to the internet--but it would definitely give you a sense of the prevailing mood in the country.
According to reports, as the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rolled out across India from July 1, Twitter recorded over one million conversations on the new tax regime between June 30 and July 2.
The high rate of conversations surrounding the GST-- billed as the largest tax reform since Independence--clearly reflects the sentiment of the nation. From #GSTIndia to #GSTForCommonMan, people took to Twitter to express their opinions and conversations about the new tax regime.
The country welcomed the GST regime on the intervening night of June 30 and July 1. A four-tier tax slab -- 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent -- has been decided under the GST.
People have also been posting pictures on various social media platforms of receipts issued in grocery stores or eateries showing tax deductions as per the GST, instead of VAT/Service tax earlier.
"Conversations around the launch of the GST exemplify Twitter as the best place for people to connect with what's happening in India and around the world and express their opinions," Twitter India Head of Public Policy and Government, Mahima Kaul, said in a statement.
She added that the platform witnessed a myriad of perspectives from the Indian audience, in support as well as raising their concerns about the GST.
"With more than a million tweets on the GST, we hope the public feedback will help to facilitate greater citizen engagement on the topic," Kaul said.
Conversations on the platform peaked at 12:30 am on July 1 with 1,100 tweets per minute.
The top hashtags around the conversation included GSTCouncil, GSTIndia, GST@GoI, GSTRate, GST, GST, GSTsimplified, IndiaforGST, askGST, GSTForCommonMan, HalfCookedGST and HalfBakedGST.