Controversy over Ankit Fadia as ‘Digital India’ ambassador


By NewsGram Staff Writer

New Delhi: The appointment of a brand ambassador for the ‘Digital India’ campaign has sparked yet another controversy.

Even as news was doing the rounds that self-proclaimed ‘ethical hacker’ Ankit Fadia, 30, has been named brand ambassador for the campaign, a statement by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology denied any such claims.

“There were certain news reports that there is a move to appoint a brand ambassador for ‘Digital India’ programme of the government. This is to clarify that there has been no such move to appoint a brand ambassador as reported,” it said.

Curiously, an hour after the post on the government’s publicity web site, it was withdrawn.

“It was posted inadvertently by one of our officials without securing proper sanction. We will get back to you by evening with the actual position,” a spokesperson for the department told IANS, when asked for a response.

Fadia, who shot to fame when he was 15 years old, with his book ‘Unofficial Guide to Ethical Hacking’, stood his ground and said the appointment letter was issued on July 1 and signed by then IT secretary Ram Sewak Sharma, now chairman of the telecom watchdog.

“Yes! I posted the certificate on Facebook yesterday. I have emails from government as proof as well,” Fadia told IANS in an SMS. The said post on Facebook alluded to his claims, pointing out that he had been retained for a period of one year to propagate products and applications.

His Facebook post also said: “Humbled and honored to be appointed as one of the brand ambassadors to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Digital India’ initiative.”

(With inputs from IANS)