Were Mahavir and Babita Phogat’s Tweets Plagiarised?

There's a curious resemblance between the Phogats' tweets and those posted by Twitter accounts that are completely unrelated to them.

WrittenBy:Pratik Sinha
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Mahavir Phogat, the father of the legendary Phogat sisters, and the Phogat sisters themselves have come into the spotlight for the public stance that they have taken via their tweets and the soundbites they have given to various media channels regarding the much debated Gurmehar Kaur issue. In a series of 3 tweets on the night of 28th February, 2017, Mahavir Phogat attacked Javed Akhtar twice and Rana Ayyub once. The tweets were posted at 10:26 p.m, 10:46 p.m and 11:21 p.m. Having been a student of social media for the past 4 years or so, when I saw these tweets today, I had an instant hunch that someone else is operating his account and that the words are not his originally. So, I searched for the text of these three tweets on Twitter and as it turns out, all the three tweets had been plagiarised by whoever is operating Mahaveer Phogat’s account.

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Let us start with the 10:26 p.m tweet where Mahavir Phogat criticises Rana Ayyub.

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The text of that tweet was tweeted at 10:01 p.m on the same day by a Twitter account called @GangadharMunoli.

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The next tweet of Mahavir Phogat at 10:46 p.m criticises Javed Akhtar.

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The text of the above tweets was tweeted at 7:06 p.m on the same day by another account called @WoCharLog.

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The next tweet of Mahavir Phogat is at 11:21 p.m. 35 minutes after his first tweet addressing Javed Akhtar, Mahavir Phogot’s account decided to target Javed Akhtar again.

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As it happens, the text of the above tweets was tweeted exactly two minutes ago at 11:19 p.m by the account @rahulroy2788.

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So, each one of the three tweets that were sent out from Mahavir Phogat’s account is plagiarised. Moreover, none of the three original tweets were addressed to either Mahavir Phogat or either one of the Phogat sisters. And it seems highly unlikely that Mahavir Phogot who’s brought up his daughters to be world champions would indulge in a petty act of copying tweets, one of them in a space of 2 minutes from the original tweet. Moreover, the act of plagiarization was not limited to Mahavir Phogat’s account. Babita Phogat also tweeted a plagiarised tweet attacking Kamal R Khan on March 1st, 2017 at 6:51 a.m.

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The text of the above tweet is borrowed from a tweet by an account called @rakeshkumar212 at 10:54 p.m. on 28th Feb, 2017.

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To add to all that, Ritu Phogat’s attack on Kanhaiya Kumar shows how misinformed she is.

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It was just yesterday that Forensic studies of the tapes of that Feb 9th event in JNU show how Kanhaiya’s voice is not to be found in any of the tapes.

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While I do not agree with Javed Akhtar’s comment vis-a-vis literacy and capability, and well less said the better about Kamaal R Khan, but it is also incredibly sad that world achievers like the Phogats be caught in a petty act of plagiarism and misinformed attacks. While my hunch is that the plagiarism is being done by someone who manages their social media accounts, the onus lies at their doorstep at the end of the day. The choice of retweets from their account, which specifically have retweeted one avowed Modi supporter Bollywood director, one Sarkari journalist with a history of Tihar and one BJP MP further indicate theirs political leanings.

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The Phogats are obviously free to choose their political leanings but they should also not forget that they have become icons for many in this country and they should not dilute their value by being trapped in such petty political games which may severely diminish their brand value.

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