NEW DELHI -- Bharatiya Janata President Amit Shah is cracking the whip before the Uttar Pradesh Assembly Election: 25,000 followers on social media or else.
Shah has said that those hoping to get tickets for the U.P. polls need to have a significant presence Facebook and Twitter, The Times of India reported today.
While some BJP leaders are worried about achieving this target, others are willing to give it a go.
BJP's outgoing state president, Laxmikant Bajpai, who has 10,000 followers on Twitter, seemed confident of achieving the "target in just three months".
Shamli lawmaker Suresh Rana, an accused in the Muzaffarnagar riots, said that Shah's "statement should not be taken as a burden."
"Instead, social media is the best way to connect with the youth and it also serves as a barometer of your work. A few days ago, I got a suggestion on FB itself when someone asked me to put up a question in Vidhan Sabha on the way Western UP's increasingly contaminated groundwater is giving rise to diseases like cancer. I do not have a fan page. The day I have that page, I will also have a minimum of 1 lakh likes," he told TOI.
Others are worried.
"The real parameter of a leader's popularity is gauged by the work he does in his area and not how many followers he has on social media. Besides, a leader serves all sections of society, and not all of them are on social media platforms," a BJP member told TOI.