Press Trust of india

BJP sees Congress-Cambridge Analytica link; Cong. terms it fake agenda

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NEW DELHI: Information Technology and Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday alleged that the Congress had liaised with data analytics company Cambridge Analytica, which is in the eye of the storm over misuse of data sourced from Facebook. The Congress, however, termed the Minister's charge "a white lie".

At a press conference in New Delhi on Wednesday, Prasad posed three questions to the Congress. “Will the Congress party depend on data manipulation and theft to woo voters? Does the Congress endorse the methods used by Cambridge Analytica, namely sex, sleaze and fake news? What is Cambridge Analytica’s role in Rahul Gandhi’s social media profile?”

Prasad asked these questions after reading out news reports, which stated that the British company had reached out to the Congress with a social media strategy ahead of elections in the country.

He also warned Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg that his company would not be spared if theft of any data of Indians is discovered. “The BJP will take it seriously if by collusive methods, data of Indians is exposed.”

“Abuse of social media through an agency seeking to compromise data security is the issue,” he said.

Later in the day, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told neither the party nor its president Rahul Gandhi used the services of Cambridge Analytica. "It is a fake agenda and white lie being dished out by Ravi Shankar Prasad," he said.

Surjewala also accused the BJP of running a "fake news factory."

"BJP's factory of fake news has produced one more fake product today. It appears fake statements, fake press conferences and fake agendas have become everyday character of BJP and its lawless Law Minister," he said.

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