Mr Fadia, 30, is one of the four names announced by the government last evening. The others are Satwat Jagwani, a 17-year-old who topped this year's IIT entrance exam, Krati Tiwari, who topped the same exam among girls, and computer scientist Pranav Mistry of Samsung USA.
The controversy erupted two days ago when Mr Fadia posted on Facebook that he had been appointed ambassador for Digital India, at a time the mega project was the highlight of PM Modi's meetings with Silicon Valley giants in the US. "Humbled and honoured to be appointed as one of the brand ambassadors to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Digital India' initiative," said the post.
As the declaration raised scorn on Twitter, the government issued a denial and said on Tuesday: "There has been no such move to appoint a brand ambassador as reported."
But the post on the government's publicity website was removed within an hour, and in the evening, another press statement confirmed the names of four brand ambassadors.
The most debated among them is Mr Fadia, who shot to fame when at 15 with his book "Unofficial Guide to Ethical Hacking".
Given his reputation as a hacker, there has been much outrage online. Many called him a self-proclaimed internet security expert whose claims had been exposed many times over the years. An author of several books on cybersecurity, he has also faced allegations of plagiarism.
Isn't Kamaal R Khan as qualified as Ankit Fadia to be an ambassador for Digital India? He has done so much for Twitter.- lindsay pereira (@lindsaypereira) September 30, 2015
Govt which selected Gajendra Chauhan to head FTII made Ankit Fadia Brand Ambassador for 'Digital India'. Why are some people surprised?- Joy (@Joydas) September 28, 2015
Maybe Ankit Fadia hacked into the PMO and got himself appointed Brand Ambassador for Digital... hehe... too impossible to even be a joke.- Ramesh Srivats (@rameshsrivats) September 28, 2015
'Digital India' to be led by Ankit Fadia, a 14.4k dial-up modem & the guy who thought 'cloud storage' meant saving data on actual clouds.- Overrated Outcast (@over_rated) September 28, 2015