A senior official of the Department of Telecom (DoT) who was suspended a day after he complained to the Delhi Police Commissioner about a “highly incendiary” video, alleged that a “well-managed web of trolls are harassing citizens”.

Joshi was suspended on 26 February after he wrote to the Commissioner regarding a video posted by former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Kapil Mishra.

On Sunday, Ashish Joshi, a bureaucrat who worked as the Controller of Communications Account in Dehradun, tweeted a screenshot of a Twitter user who had allegedly threatened him earlier trolled him following his suspension.

“So the guy who abused me & threatened me on phone, later tweeted after I was suspended. I got the number traced to Indore. But the mobile number is of Maharashtra- Loop mobile,” he wrote in his tweet.

“It is a well managed web of trolls across the country, harassing citizens,” Joshi added.

When asked by Twitter user Elliot Alderson to elaborate on what he was alleging, Joshi explained that the troll web has been rattled by his initiative to get the harassers probed.

“The first sentence means have you lost your job in Hindi. I was in fact suspended by my Department – Telecom. So obviously my initiative to get some mobile numbers investigated from which abusive whatsapp messages were sent has rattled the troll web,” he wrote in a subsequent tweet.

 

Meanwhile, an online petition to reinstate Joshi is doing the rounds of the Internet. Addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha and DoT Secretary, the petition on change.org calls Joshi “an honest and conscientious civil servant” who “has been punished for doing his duty”.

“The country needs Civil Servants like Ashish Joshi for whom public interest comes first and they work towards addressing the problems of the Citizens,” the petition reads.

Highlighting the rising cases of harassment of citizens on social media, the petition said that Joshi, as a public servant, “took the initiative to take action against those sending obscene ,vulgar & offensive messages to citizens in public interest”.

Expressing thanks, Joshi said that it is heartening to see support from the citizens.

“In democracy, it is finally citizens in whom power vests and the power is given to Trustees for a period. But will the trustees Listen?” he tweeted.

 

In a letter to the Delhi Police Commissioner on 25 February, Joshi drew attention to a video uploaded by Mishra on 24 February alleging that it “provokes people to attack some citizens”.

According to The Economic Times, a senior official of the Ministry of Communications said that Joshi “was suspended include misuse of official position, creating public confusion, and violation of conduct rules”.