The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), a railway Public Sector Undertaking (PSU), has emailed nearly two crore mails between December 8 and December 12 to its customers, listing major decisions taken by Narendra Modi and his government to support the Sikh community.
IRCTC has mailed a 47-page booklet- ‘PM Modi and his government’s special relationship with Sikhs’ to their entire database as a part of the government’s ‘public interest’ outreach to make them aware of the farm bills and 13 decisions taken to support the Sikh community.
The booklets are in Hindi, Punjabi, and English and talk about the justice given to the 1984 riot victims, Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) registration granted to Sri Harmandir Sahib, Jallianwala Bagh Memorial, no taxes on langar, and the Kartarpur corridor, among other things under 13 heads.
Meanwhile, certain elements have questioned that the emails have been selectively sent only to Sikhs. In response, the IRCTC has rejected all the accusations and reports suggesting that it had sent emails, highlighting the relationship between Sikhs and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to people with surname ‘Singh’ and those who hailed from Punjab only. It said that the emails were sent to all and that such activities are not unprecedented.
The IRCTC, released an official statement, stating “The mails have been sent to all, irrespective of any particular community. This is not the first instance. Earlier also such activities have been undertaken by IRCTC to promote government welfare schemes in the public interest,”
According to an official, “IRCTC sent out 1.9 crore emails in five days till October 12”, and it was a conscious communication strategy taken by the government to convey their message.
“Which professional company or corporate doesn’t analyze the demographic profile of the audience where the communication is to be delivered to? Why are some surprised if a government organization is able to do as much or even better than what the corporates do day in and day out? One should be happy that the government of the day is as good in disseminating information in the public interest,” said an official.
Union Minister Prakash Javadekar released the booklet on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti on December 1. It’s a riposte to those who call Modi heartless to Punjab farmers, most of whom are Sikhs.