Sushma Swaraj and her altruistic Twitter presence
She was taken away on Tuesday after that fatal heart attack. May be, if she had an inkling, she might surely have said a 'good bye' to her fellow beings in a tweet.
An erudite speaker, a seven-time Member of Parliament, youngest minister in a state cabinet at the age of 25, Sushma Swaraj will be known for many of her qualities and achievements. But what stands out is the Minister Sushma Swaraj's use of Twitter to connect and reach out to Indians in need world over. She used social media to connect to people and build bridges - her responses to Pakistani patients seeking medical help in India to Indian diaspora stranded abroad, made her ministerial style distinctive. A 'twitter happy' leader for all Indians.
Her last tweet, on the day of her demise on Tuesday was to thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the Kashmir initiatives.
प्रधान मंत्री जी - आपका हार्दिक अभिनन्दन. मैं अपने जीवन में इस दिन को देखने की प्रतीक्षा कर रही थी. @narendramodi ji - Thank you Prime Minister. Thank you very much. I was waiting to see this day in my lifetime.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) August 6, 2019
And last month she even asked her well-wishers to "not pay attention" to rumors about her ill-health
आज के ट्वीट्स देख कर ऐसा लगता है की जैसे मेरे अस्वस्थ होने की अफवाह चल रही है। मैं सभी शुभचिंतकों को बताना चाहती हूँ की कृपया चिंता न करें। मैं बिलकुल ठीक हूँ।— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 10, 2019
She Tweeted to deny the news of her appointment as Governor of Andhra Pradesh
The news about my appointment as Governor of Andhra Pradesh is not true.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) June 10, 2019
I called on the Vice President of India Shri Venkaiah Naidu ji on demitting office as Minister of External affairs. This was enough for Twitter to appoint me as the Governor of Andhra Pradesh.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) June 10, 2019
She was so popular in the social media that her fans even freely joked about her family. Her husband Governor Swaraj was equally funny and responded to every tweet of his wife's fans with befitting humour.
And the favourite use of her twitter account has always been to deliver help to Indians abroad. Her tenure as Foriegn Minister of India from 2014-2019 was marked by her social media use to bring relief to fellow countrymen in difficult situations.
I have seen news reports about abduction of five Indian sailors by pirates in Nigeria. I am asking Indian High Commissioner to take this up at the highest level with Government of Nigeria for their release.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) May 7, 2019
Abhay - Please take this up and send me a report. @india_nigeria
She had the habit of directly tagging her officers in the minsitry, ambassodors and high commissioners in her tweet and directing them to help Indians in need anywhere on priority. Also thanking them for their prompt action.
I got the report next day. I think you know the facts. I do not wish to share them here. You may visit my office and we will share the facts with you. My report is that your husband is not in jail. He is in a hotel. Our Embassy is in constant touch with him and giving all help. https://t.co/ffCMJvFiyQ— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) April 28, 2019
Her caring words to Indians in trouble won her the name 'supermom' by Washington Post.
She was taken away by death suddenly on Tuesday after that fatal heart attack. May be, if she had an inkling, she might surely have said a 'good bye' to her fellow beings in a tweet. Rest in Peace Sushma Ji, we will miss your gracious presence on the timeline and elsewhere.