Police in India have summoned the head of Twitter in the country, Manish from Shawari, and are obliging him to appear before the relevant authorities in the country after allowing the distribution of a video that includes “hate and hostility”, according to police. According to a report in the Reuters news agency, the company did not act to stop the distribution of a video in which several men, apparently Hindus, are seen beating an elderly man with a Muslim appearance and cutting off his beard.
Police in Ghaziabad in the north of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh have intervened in the incident and are forcing Mahawari to report within seven days of the summons. Twitter did not respond to a Reuters report.
Last month, new laws were enacted in India by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, called The Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code. These rules state that social networks are significant intermediaries and therefore have a greater responsibility for the content that is published by them – this is the main reason why the police come to Twitter with complaints, since they have a responsibility in the matter.
The rules require companies, including Twitter, to set up a proper response mechanism for complaints, staff civilian positions that will be responsible for complying with government laws and remove prohibited content within 36 hours if a legal order is obtained.
Rabbi Shankar Prasad, the minister responsible for the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, said Twitter defiantly refused to comply with the new rules, and if it continued to do so, it would face serious consequences. He added that “many questions arise as to whether Twitter is entitled to protection. However, the simple fact is that Twitter did not meet the guidelines that came into force at the end of May. Twitter was given multiple opportunities to obey, but it deliberately chose not to abide by the rules. Choose the path of deliberate defiance. ” In fact, he claims that Twitter practices selective enforcement when it is convenient for it.
A Twitter spokesman, however, told “Globes” that they abide by every step of the new rules. He notes that the chief compliance officer is working on things “and the details will be shared directly with the government ministry soon. Twitter continues to make every effort to comply with the new guidelines,” it said.
Twitter has in the past expressed grave concerns for the safety of its employees in India, this after the police in India raided the company’s offices. On Twitter, we marked a tweet from a member of the ruling party as “manipulated media”, which led to the raid. A senior police official told The Indian Express that they had come to the offices to give a message to Twitter, as they did not know “who is the right person to deliver the message to.”
Twitter tweeted after this incident and wrote that “we, along with many of civil society in India and around the world, fear the use of intimidation tactics by the police in response to enforcing our global usage rules,” the tweet read.