A tweet seeking help for a Covid-19-infected person in his constituency, Ghaziabad, landed Union Minister General VK Singh in controversy today when it was viewed as a sign of the poor condition of the country’s health infrastructure. It was perceived as a sign of his privileged position which common citizens could not dream of. General Singh later deleted his post to avoid fuelling any more misunderstanding.
The Union Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways had posted on Twitter seeking help from authorities in Ghaziabad to get a hospital bed for “my brother”.
He had tagged the district magistrate in his tweet, prompting Twitterati to question the state of the medical infrastructure in the country where even the minister’s relatives were struggling. On the other hand, the tweet was used to highlight his elite status, especially with several senior Uttar Pradesh government officials promptly replying to his post.
Others like Shiv Sena MP Priyanka Chaturvedi, however, realised that General Singh had only forwarded a plea, even though she, too, highlighted the “helplessness of an elected representative”.
“Here, Hon. MP and Minister has forwarded a plea received by him to the DM. But this tweet in itself explains the helplessness of an elected representative & his inability to find a single bed in his constituency. I hope the patient gets the help needed and is fine soon,” Ms Chaturvedi tweeted.
General Singh later posted: “Clarification: I tweeted this request so that the district administration can reach the person in need and provide him with the medical care that his brother requires. He is not my brother by blood relation, but by bond of humanity. I think it’s an alien concept to some.”
He deleted the older tweet and said, “Am amazed at IQ level of trawls and fastest finger channels. Tweet was forward of a tweet to DM and says ‘please look into this’. Forwarded tweet is in Hindi. Bed needs have been sorted out by DM & CMO, hence to DM. Suggest correct your understanding.”