The website of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) went into “maintenance” mode after an alleged hacking attempt early on Tuesday morning.
Social media was abuzz with screenshots of a meme featuring Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Below the meme was a music video of the film “Bohemian Rhapsody”.
The meme poked fun at a clip in which German Chancellor Angela Merkel walks past Modi as he extends his hand.
Later, while trying to open the website, it showed the following message: “We will be back soon! Sorry for the inconvenience but we’re performing some maintenance at the moment. We’ll be back online shortly.”
The party has not commented yet on the website malfunction.
The website of the country’s ruling political party stopped functioning amid brewing tensions between India and Pakistan following the Pulwama terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir in which over 44 CRPF troopers were killed.
Within hours of the Pulwama attack, Pakistani-linked hackers reportedly attacked nearly 90 Indian government websites, leading India to initiate counter-offensive measures in cyberspace.
In the same week, Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs website was not working in several countries including the US.
Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesperson Mohammad Faisal alleged that New Delhi was behind the attack.
As the official website of the BJP went down, Congress’ Twitter manager, Divya Spandana was among the first to tweet about the malfunction of the website.
According to a report in the Dawn, cross-border hacking attacks have been sporadic yet common since at least 1998.
Fingers were pointed to India-based hackers when the official website of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) was found defaced in June 2017. In December that year, the official website of Karachi police was hacked and defaced, allegedly by Indian hackers, the report said.
Earlier, in July 2016, hackers claiming to be from Pakistan defaced the websites of seven Indian embassies, high commissions, and consulates in various countries with pro-Pakistan Army slogans.