War of memes: Political parties spar on social media ahead of Delhi Assembly Elections

As poll dates close in, BJP, INC and the incumbent AAP turn social media into a battleground with memes, parodies and jibes

e4m by Shreshtha Verma
Updated: Jan 16, 2020 1:40 PM
Political Battle

Delhi assembly elections are just days away and political parties have already started sparring with each other. This time around, the battleground is social media. The IT cells of political parties are on overdrive, trying to smear their political rivals’ reputations with parody videos and memes, leaving netizens amused. Nobody on the internet would have expected to see the side of India politics, known mostly to take a relatively more solemn approach towards campaigning. Major parties like Bhartiya Janta Party, Indian National Congress and the incumbent Aam Aadmi Party have been having a go at one another on social media through memes and videos.

Recently, AAP shared a morphed video of BJP leader Manoj Tiwari dancing to its campaign song on Twitter. The party had also shared a funny video meme – an edited version of a classic Ambuja Cement ad –, mocking rivals BJP and Congress. The two parties hit back with hilarious versions of their own. With parties duelling back and forth, the social media war doesn’t seem like it may end anytime soon.

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According to Anup Sharma, an independent political communications expert, music has been traditionally used in electioneering in the form of campaign songs and therefore, it works better than anything else.

“A picture is worth a 1000 words, and if you add humour, it will sell everywhere. Election campaigns are being fought on mobile devices. Nowadays, it’s easy to create memes with free tools for a lighter discourse, and then amplifying it through the various social media platforms,” he elucidated.

The most recent meme shared by AAP on Twitter is a reference to the 1993 movie, Baazigar. The meme has been taken from the film's song, "Chhupana Bhi Nahi Aata”, featuring Shahrukh Khan as Kejriwal, Kajol as Delhi and Siddharth Ray as Manoj Tiwari. Ray (Tiwari) can be seen woefully looking at Kajol (Delhi) while she appears to be enjoying the company of SRK (Kejriwal).

Well! It’s too early to say who will win the Delhi throne. But long before votes are counted, Aam Aadmi Party at least seems to be winning the on-going battle on social media.

While BJP and INC have around 30M and 13M followers respectively on social media, AAP has only 10M. Given the fact that Aam Aadmi Party is younger than its political rivals and has a very less social media following compared to them, AAP is quite prepared in terms of unleashing creative memes, and social media campaigns, and declaring its candidates.

AAP IT team has already commenced its meme-filled social media campaign, which also comprises the song, “Lage Raho Kejriwal.” In contrast, BJP and INC are yet to officially announce their social media campaigns and declare their candidates for their elections. However, their IT teams seem to be working quite actively.

Here's a look at some of the most popular memes and videos till now.

Aam Aadmi Party

केजरीवाल अंकल का दिल्ली के बच्चों के लिए तोहफा। pic.twitter.com/q6Vjjf3fQS

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