Someone in China running IT Cell of Congress !!! Location : Siachuan, China and Domain name : CongressITcell.com !!
It is viral on social media that the congress party’s IT cell is being operated from Sichuan, China on the domain name ‘congressitcell.com’. Multiple right-wing supporters shared the screen grab of details from the ‘whois’ website to question the connection between China and Congress. Some claimed that Congress/Rahul Gandhi is a Congress agent quoting the location details of the said domain.
What is the truth?
When searching for the domain name ‘congressitcell.com’ on the ‘whois’ website we found that the image in circulation is true. The registrar of the domain is identified as ‘DropCatch.com 061 LLC’ and the location as Sichuan, China. However, the domain is said to be registered by this registrar on 4, June 2023 with the domain validity of one year.
When searching the archived pages of the website ‘congressitcell.com’ on Wayback Machine, we found multiple saved pages starting from August 2018 till March 2023.
When checking the first saved page dated 6, August 2018, we found the ‘Congress IT Cell’ logo on the page’s top right corner. And first post was dated 15, November 2017 on this page. A contact address is listed and it shows India’s Gujarat and not China.
We then checked the last saved page dated 21, March 2023, but it resulted in an empty page with the logo ‘Name Cheap’. When searching for a saved page dated 11, March 2023, we found a poll with the title ‘Congress IT Cell – the unofficial website’. The question is stated as ‘Which one is the real Congress IT Cell?’ with the options listed as ‘The Caravan’, ‘The Quint’, ‘Alt News’, ‘The Print’ and ‘The Wire’ along with mocking one-liners for each media organisation.
This page also displayed a disclaimer at the bottom stating, “This website has been launched to gather public opinion about certain Indian publications. The website is not officially associated with any of these publications or with the Congress party. The sole objective of this website is to gather public comments and feedback.”
This poll was also found tweeted in 2021 by many including Shefali Vaidya. We tried searching to find the previous owners of the domain and the whoxy website listed four records out of which 2 listed Iceland as the location and one Singapore and the other China.
This proves that the website was initially operated in the name of Congress IT cell and later by various other owners.
It is found that a website once operated in the name of Congress is shared to fabricate a link between China and Congress. It is to be noted that the website is owned by various others after that.