A year ago, on June 14, 2020, India got a shock from the news of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death. Rajput was allegedly found in his room at his Bandra apartment in Mumbai, and Mumbai Police had prima facie ruled it as suicide.
However, the matter did not end there - die had fans of Rajput, who call themselves SSRians, have consistently and persistently waged a campaign on social media to urge the authorities to look further into the matter, as they alleged that Rajput was a victim of foul play, rather than suicide.
However, despite investigations by the Narcotics Control Bureau and the Central Bureau of Investigation, there has been no evidence yet that might dismiss the allegation of suicide.
Nonetheless, the social media campaign continues. In his death anniversary, the late actor's name featured prominently in the top trends on Twitter. Looking through the massively popular trend, we found some traces of coordinated inauthentic activity.
#SushantSinghRajput Tweeted Out 30,000 Times Today
The hashtag #SushantSinghRajput has been extremely busy - since Rajput's death, it has been tweeted out more than 250,000 times. A quick look at the tweets reveal that it has been tweeted out multiple times every single day.
In June 2021 itself, it has been tweeted out 57,056 times, with most of them appearing on the first death anniversary.
The hashtag picked up just after midnight, and was tweeted 30,056 times on June 14, until 1 PM.
We also noticed some coordinated inauthentic activities among the tweets. A few noticeable accounts were found tweeting thousands of tweets with the hashtag, in a short span of time.
User @nishi821 tweeted out this hashtag 2,344 times in this month itself, sometimes spamming the exact same tweet multiple times over in replies to other tweets. A closer look at the account revealed that it is dedicated to tweeting about the actor, with trending hashtags.
Another user by the name of Mukta Dengra (@VatDengra) has tweeted out the hashtag 1,142 times, while user @SobuSushi tweeted it out 951 times in this month itself.
Overall, we found 7,114 tweets this month from bot accounts, who had spammed the hashtag multiple times with similarly worded tweets.
Do you always want to share the authentic news with your friends?