New Delhi: India’s accomplishment of Mission Shakti — anti-satellite (ASAT) missile test that catapulted India into the space super league of only four countries capable of pulling off this military feat — received a phenomenal response on the virtual world. 

Close to 60% of the posts on social media related to keyword ASAT received an encouraging response while only 23% of over a lakh tweets were negative in nature and rest 17% were neutral. 

Also Read: Uphold peace in space: China lectures India on ASAT missile test

MyNation, along with Cybersecurity NGO Root64 foundation, did a social media sentiments analysis using Opini8, an AI-powered tool that gives in-depth insight on public perception and reach on social media platforms. These trends are based on data captured from social media websites and other open sources and do not reflect the actual feeling. The analysis yielded the following result.

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“The success of Mission Shakti can be considered as the most influential event of this time with around 60 per cent positive tweets. This has really given some high to the people as they are happy and excited to share country’s achievement,” said Amit Dubey founder of Root64 foundation.
The analytics showed that there were 23% negative tweets. “With negative percentage so low it is clear that opposition couldn’t find much to discredit NDA government. Analytics show most of the negative tweets are about the timing the event,” Dubey explained.

A large number of tweets related to ASAT was also generated from Pakistan which were negative in nature. India successfully tested ASAT missiles amid high tension with Pakistan, which sees Mission Shakti as a direct threat as the move gives India access to global space power.
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Interestingly, there were not many original posts related to ASAT. The analysis showed that almost 89 % posts were retweets while just 5% tweets were original post and 6% tweets were replies. “There is no specific reason behind the low number of original tweets. Our analysis suggests that possibly netizens didn’t had much knowledge about the sudden announcement made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. So almost similar types of congratulating tweets were observed,” Dubey said.
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Even after 24 hours of the announcement, #ASAT was leading with #MissionShakti followed by #DRDO and #India and #PMModi.  There was a large percentage of tweets where only #ASAT and #DRDO with no mention of #PMModi, which could be possibly because people considered it as a non-political move. Most of these tweets were generated from Delhi , Mumbai and Bangalore followed by Surat, Lucknow, Orissa and Chennai.

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The leading influencing handle on social media when the Mission Shakti was announced were @narendramodi, @SpokespersonMOD, @Smritiirani ,@AmithShah, @majorpoonia and @Dev_Fadnavis . While on the negative side it was dominated by @ArvindKejriwal and @ahmedpatel.  They surpassed Rahul Gandhi and Akhilesh, who refrained from attack Modi, to influence the people negatively related to ASAT.  

Analysis assistance by InnSight of Innefu