16:22 GMT28 May 2020
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    Some 77% of Indians are concerned about dissemination of false information, while 64% view politicians as corrupt individuals, according to research carried out by an international organisation just prior to the national elections in India.

    New Delhi (Sputnik): A study by the US-based Pew Research Centre has revealed that more than three out of four Indian adults are concerned about the spread of false or incomplete information during electioneering, adding that in excess of three out of five individuals are of the opinion that corruption is pervasive amongst politicians.

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    Pew conducted two surveys in their study. The first one was on how adults in India see their elected officials and how they view Indian democracy. The second survey was on how they felt about the spread of misinformation through mobile technology.

    Some 900 million people are expected to exercise their franchise in India's upcoming general election, which is going to be held against the backdrop of India-Pakistan tensions, where it is believed that there would be massive use of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, etc. to garner partisan support.

    Breaking down the research information, the study revealed that although Indians frequently use mobile phones for news and information, opinions are divided over the impact of mobile phones on politics.

    "Adults who support Modi's BJP are more likely to say mobile phones have had a good influence on politics (49%) than those who support the Congress party (33%). Last September, the president of the BJP had encouraged party's supporters to spread a pro-BJP message on WhatsApp and other social media platforms — whether those messages are true or false", the Pew Research says.

    About eight in ten Indian adults use their mobile phones for the consumption of news.

    According to the Pew survey, among the seven social media and messaging apps, WhatsApp and Facebook are the ones most widely used in India. WhatsApp was found to be the most frequently used platform in India to spread fake news.

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    As far as the future of the world's largest democracy is concerned, more than half of Indian voters have a dismal outlook on India's future prospects. Some 58% of adults in India opine that no matter who wins an election, things would not change very much. But a sizeable number of Indians do think that their country allows for other democratic values to flourish.     

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    Tags:
    elections, Survey, election campaign, Election Commission, Indians, Study, Election, Pew Research Center, Rahul Gandhi, Narendra Modi, India, New Delhi
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