|  Friday , September 4 , 2009 |


Net search: Disbelief turns to ‘bad and sad’

Calcutta, Sept. 3: The search for Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy spilled over from the Andhra forests to the Internet as the wired world went berserk trying to track the chief minister.

The tension, mystery and anxiety over the missing chopper reached its peak at 7pm yesterday with “YSR” the buzzword. Hyderabad ranked first among the cities on a frantic search, followed by Bangalore and Chennai.

When a Calcuttan posted a puzzled comment on his Facebook status update, asking “is it snag or what? how a CM disappears all of a sudden!”, it was followed by a stream of mixed responses.

Some dismissed the news as “Yes, I know the news/rumour, never believed it”; others sensed foul play. “It seems like foul play to me, although u can never be sure about these political melodramas…..!!”

Some kept coming back to their status messages for an update; others kept online friends apprised with a steady flow of commentaries and news updates about the chopper and the rescue operation.

Tense bloggers like Omsherryom engaged themselves in the quest for YSR with blogposts that read: “As (the) search for YSR gets intense, the possibility of worst is getting stronger. 5 bodies are reportedly found from a site where chopper is found after 24 hrs.”

Twitter was abuzz with regular posts by junior foreign minister Shashi Tharoor, such as “deeply concerned about Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh YS Rajashekhar Reddy missing in Nallamalla forest. Disturbing no accurate news 4 hrs”. This was followed by: “Tragic news frm Andhra. YSR gone within four months of his grt electoral triumph. We hv lost too many fine ldrs in accidents: Scindia, Pilot.”

Tragedy loomed large over the virtual world as news of YSR’s death started floating in. “We LOST one more Leader due to carelessness by air traffic controller.. Felt bad & sad about YSR…” screamed a comment on Facebook posted instantly by a Delhi’ite. “YSR cud hav been saved. MINISTRY OF DEFENSE did not let it happen”, cried a furious Twitter user.

Bloggers in Bangalore and several southern towns filled up their blogs with observations and solutions that they felt could have averted the disaster.