New Delhi: Late Sushma Swaraj was India’s Minister of External Affairs from May 26, 2014, to May 30, 2019. She was a well-known BJP leader and was widely appreciated for staying connected with the people and using the power and resources at her disposal to help those in need. The late Minister of External Affairs had a strong presence especially on the micro-blogging website, Twitter and her interactions and comments always left people wanting more. Unfortunately, she passed away one year ago today (August 6, 2019) after suffering a heart attack at AIIMS, Delhi.
In her memory, let us look back at five instances where Sushma Swaraj won our hearts with her witty tweets:
1. That time Sushma Swaraj responded to the weirdest complaint tweeted at her:
Back in 2016, in a now-deleted tweet, a man named Venkat tweeted at Sushma Swaraj writing, "@irvpaswan @SushmaSwaraj Dear Ministers, @Samsung_IN sold me a defective refrigerator, they r not ready to replace." While most political leaders would have ignored this, the late Union Minister promptly responded, "Brother, I cannot help you in matters of a refrigerator. I am very busy with human beings in distress."
Brother I cannot help you in matters of a Refrigerator. I am very busy with human beings in distress. https://t.co/cpC5cWBPcz— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) June 13, 2016
It was in moments like these that she proved herself to be a true social media guru!
2. That time Sushma Swaraj reunited a couple:
In August of 2016, Faizan Patel tweeted that he and his wife were planning to go to Italy for their honeymoon, but that they were unable to as his wife, Sana Fatima Khan, had lost her passport. Taking to Twitter, he wrote, “This is how I am traveling with my wife as of now” and attached a photo of himself seated on one seat with a photo of his wife on the seat next to him.
Sushma stepped in to save the day (in a now-deleted tweet) writing back, "Ask your wife to contact me. I will ensure that she is with you on the next seat."She later added, “My office has reached you already. You will get a duplicate passport tomorrow. @faizanpatel.”
3. That time Sushma Swaraj promised the Government’s help even if a citizen is “stuck on Mars”:
Several people tweeted at Sushma Swaraj during her tenure, seeking help when they either got stranded abroad or lost their passport. She always responded and managed to get through and help even when things seemed impossible. On one occasion, she even promised to help even if anyone got stuck on Mars! This happened on June 8th,2017, when a Twitter user tweeted at the foreign minister asking her to help him out as he was "stuck on Mars". Not to be outsmarted, she wittily responded, “even if you are stuck on Mars, the Indian Embassy there will help you."
Even if you are stuck on the Mars, Indian Embassy there will help you. https://t.co/Smg1oXKZXD— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) June 8, 2017
4. That time Sushma Swaraj understood someone when no one else would:
A Twitter user named Gavy, a native of Punjab once asked for the foreign minister's help to bring his sick friend back to India. As the tweet had multiple grammatical errors, the man was mocked by many, however, Sushma Swaraj compassionately responded to his tweet writing, "There is no problem. After becoming Foreign Minister, I have learnt to follow English of all accents and grammar."
There is no problem. After becoming Foreign Minister, I have learnt to follow English of all accents and grammar. https://t.co/2339A1Fea2— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 11, 2019
5. That time Sushma Swaraj responded to a hater with love:
Despite her popularity, even the late Union Minister had her fair share of haters online on internet trolls. When she took to Twitter to share her condolences for Mange Ram, a former BJP leader, a troll lashed out at her saying that her time would also come soon. Sushma, who is known for her wit, responded to the individual writing, “I thank you in anticipation for this kind thought."
Is bhawana ke liye apko mera agrim dhanyawad.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 21, 2019
I thank you in anticipation for this kind thought. https://t.co/pbuW6R6gcE
What better way is there to trump a troll than to respond with kindness?
Sushma Swaraj was a leader who knew how to connect with the people, especially through the use of modern means like social media. There have been many other leaders who have been following her footsteps or, at least, connecting with the people in their own style. However, not all have been as successful as Sushma Swaraj. With the world is switching to the online mode, especially during the pandemic, more political leaders and people should make use of social media to work together.
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