Chandrayaan 2, cricket and the elections — Top 10 events that took Twitter by storm this year

Citizens celebrate the successful launch of Chandrayaan 2 abroad the GSLV-MkIII rocket from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in SriharikotaBCCL
  • #LokSabhaElection was the most trending hashtag on Twitter over the past year in India.
  • The Twitterati was also significantly excited about India’s second moon mission, Chandrayaan 2 -- following all the developments as they happened.
  • Even though #CWC19 was the third highest trending hashtag on Twitter, the most popular cricketing tweet was Virat Kohli wishing MS Dhoni a happy birthday.
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It's been a busy year for India with the world’s largest elections to attempting to land on the Moon. And through all of it, millions of users flocked to Twitter to share their opinion.

The Lok Sabha Election election was the most talked about event on Twitter. Adding to the excitement was Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s celebratory tweet on being elected into office for a second consecutive term.



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And, cricket can never be too far from the hearts of Indians. Except the most retweeted tweet wasn’t about an IPL match or the Cricket World Cup. It was the current captain of the Indian team, Virat Kohli, wishing the former captain, M.S. Dhoni, on his birthday.


Kohli was also featured last year on Twitter for his picture with Bollywood actress and wife, Anushka Sharma, on the eve of Karvachauth — the ‘most liked tweet of 2018’.

As we reach the end of 2019, here are the top ten hashtags shared on Twitter over the year show the events which evoked the greatest reactions from India’s Twitterati:

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#LokSabhaElections2019

#LokSabhaElections2019

BJP supporters assembled at BJP headquarters after BJP won majority seats during 2019 Lok Sabha Election under the leadership of PM Modi (Source: BCCL)

It’s no surprise that the biggest election in the world, the Lok Sabha Election 2019, holds the top spot on Twitter’s list of the most happening hashtags in 2019. Over 900 million voters participated in the exercise over the span of one month, with polling booths set up to cover the most remote of locations.

The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Narendra Modi retained his iron throne to become the first non-Congress Prime Minister to serve a second term.

#Chandrayaan2

#Chandrayaan2

Chandrayaan 2 launching from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota (Source: ISRO)

India’s second mission to the Moon, Chandrayaan 2, was trending on Twitter before it even had a chance to get off the launchpad. After all, the mission was finally set to go after seven attempts had already been thwarted.

Chandrayaan 2 only gained more traction over the next seven weeks as it got closer the Moon to attempt a soft-landing. But on the day of reckoning, the mission’s lander — Vikramcrashed instead.

Although the mission was not entirely a failure, since the orbiter was successfully running circles around the Moon, support poured in from all corners of the world. And, the excitement wasn’t over just yet.


With the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) being vague about the lander’s fate, Chandrayaan 2 trended yet again once the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) shared pictures of Vikram’s crash site last week.

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#CWC19

#CWC19

The ICC World Cup 2019 Cricket match screened on giant screens in CP, New Delhi (Source: BCCL)

Cricket has always been India’s most popular sport and the Cricket World Cup only amplified fans’ passionate spirit. From tweeting about winning moments to sharing a plethora of memes, cricket fans owned Twitter all through the summer.

It wasn’t just fans engaging in conversations but brands as well. Businesses reportedly spent ₹10-12 billion during the event on advertising.

And, even though India’s team lost to New Zealand in the semi-finals — the tweets just kept coming.

​Pulwama

​Pulwama

Members of Pune District Painting Association light candles to pay tribute to Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel who were killed after a suicide bombing in the Pulwama district (Source: BCCL)

Early in the year, a militant attack killed at least 42 Indian security personnel in Kashmir’s Pulwama district. Everybody, from celebrities to politicians, shared their reactions.

A few days later, another encounter killed one army officer and four soldiers.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter to say, “The attack... is despicable. I strongly condemn this dastardly attack. The sacrifices of our brave security personnel shall not go in vain. The entire nation stands shoulder to shoulder with the families of the brave martyrs.”
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#Article370

#Article370

Kashmiris residing in Bengaluru along with activists and volunteers gathered to protest against the shut down in Kashmir following the scrapping of Article 370 and demanded that internet and mobile phone connections to be restored immediately (Source: BCCL)

India’s region of Jammu and Kashmir was in the spotlight yet again when the government revoked Article 370, which gave the former state special status. State leaders took to Twitter to express their dismay, calling the move unilateral and unconstitutional.

As the state’s fate hung in the balance, some supported it under the slogan of ‘One Flag, One Nation’ while experts speculated that it might have been a grave mistake by the newly formed government.


On August 5, the state was divided into two Union Territories (UTs) — Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

#Bigil

#Bigil

Bigil movie poster (Source: AGS Entertainment)

Tamil and Telugu movies dominate Twitter trends at least once a month as new releases hit the theatres. Twitter’s preliminary trends showed that Ajith Kumar’s Viswasam was shaping up to be one of the most influential moments of 2019. Instead, Vijay’s Bigil beat Viswasam as well as superstar Rajnikanth’s Petta to be the sixth most popular hashtag on the platform.


The poster for Bigil was also the most retweeted tweet from the entertainment industry.
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#Diwali

#Diwali

People light firecrackers during Diwali celebrations at Nariman point in Mumbai (Source: BCCL)

Diwali wasn’t on Twitter’s top 10 list last year, but in 2019 it swarmed the platform. Not only were people sharing their own moments from the festive season, but also wishing others.

The secret to ‘#Diwali’ success might lie in the fact that Twitter introduced a new Diwali emoji on its platform ahead of the season. Diya’s flame even went from being dimly lit to brightly lit as users switched between the platform’s light and dark mode.

Twitter also integrated Diwali greetings in eleven additional local languages.

#AvengersEndgame

#AvengersEndgame

Avengers Endgame movie poster (Source: Marvel)

It’s hardly surprising that the Avengers finale was one of the most talked-about events of 2019. Even Mark Ruffalo — better known as the Hulk — couldn’t help himself from spoiling the ending weeks before the scheduled launch, even though he didn't know it.

(Spoilers ahead)

Once the movie hit the stands, fans gathered on Twitter to discuss the movie’s most perplexing aspects. Was it time travel or dimension-hopping? If it was time travel, why weren’t any paradoxes created? Who was the lone kid at the end of the movie?

It also showed one of the most important highlights of the Avengers series, how Falcon, played by Anthony Mackie, becomes the next Captain America.

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#AyodhyaVerdict

#AyodhyaVerdict

Members of Tamil Nadu Thowheedh Jamaath stage a protest against the Supreme Court verdict on a disputed religious site of Ayodhya in Chennai (Source: BCCL)

On 9 November 2019, the Indian Supreme Court finally pronounced the Ayodhya verdict — nearly 28 years after the Babri mosque was demolished in 1992. The dispute over its title was ever older, dating back to 1885.

Despite the many controversies surrounding the site and contradictory opinions, the final verdict was unanimous. It ruled in favour of constructing a Ram Mandir (temple) on the site, while Muslims will be allocated a separate 5-acre site to build a mosque.


While some took to Twitter to celebrate the decision, others — like Anand Mahindra — lauded the Supreme Court for having the courage to uphold the ‘process of justice’.

#EidMubarak

#EidMubarak

Muslim community members performing mass prayer to celebrate Eid al-Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice at Idgah maidan at Chamarajpet in Bengaluru (Source: BCCL)

Eid is the second festival to make it onto Twitter’s list of most popular hashtags. Even Ivanka Trump, daughter of US President Donald Trump, wished everyone Eid Mubarak (blessed feast) only to be criticised for her father’s ban on Muslim’s travelling into the US.

Others took the opportunity to advocate against animal sacrifice during the festive season, with other hashtags like #BloodlessEid and #Stop_Killing_Animals trending simultaneously.

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