Why is #TwitterBanIndia trending on Twitter
New Delhi, June 16: On of the top trends on Twitter today was #TwitterBanIndia. This is primarily to do with two developments with regard to Twitter which is yet to comply with the new IT rules in India.
While on one hand, an FIR was lodged against including Twitter by the UP police the other is to do with reports about Twitter losing legal shield for non-compliance of the new IT rules, despite being reminded by the government on several occasions.
An FIR was filed against 9, including Twitter and some journalists in connection with an incident in Loni, Uttar Pradesh where a man was trashed and his beard was chopped off.
The police said that there is no communal angle to this incident. Further Twitter has done nothing to stop this video from going viral, the Ghaziabad police said in its FIR.
Meanwhile Twitter has lost legal indemnity India after it failed to comply with the new IT rules, which requires it to appoint key officers in India.
The development came shortly after a case was filed in Uttar Pradesh against Twitter over posts on a viral video of an assault that the police say tried to incite communal violence.
The rules came into effect on May 25 and Twitter is yet to comply with them and due to this their protection as an intermediary has gone. Twitter is liable for penal actions against any Indian law just as any publisher is, NDTV quoting sources said.
Twitter was accused of not removing misleading content linked to an incident in Ghaziabad on June 5, in which an elderly Muslim man had alleged that his beard was cut off and he was forced to chant Jai Shri Ram and Vande Mataram by a group.
The police however said that the incident was not a communal one. In fact the man in question Sufi Abdul Samad was attacked by six men-both Hindus and Muslims as they were unhappy with the amulets he had sold to them. The FIR charged Twitter and several journalists for inciting communal sentiments with posts sharing the allegations made by the man of the assault.
Now that Twitter has not flagged the video as manipulated media, they are liable for penal action as they do not enjoy any protection.
Twitter on Tuesday said that it has appointed an interim chief compliance officer in India. In a statement, Twitter said that an interim chief compliance officer has been retained. It will share all details of the appointment with the IT ministry soon, it said and added that the company will continue to make every effort to comply with the new digital media guidelines in India.
"We will keep the IT ministry apprised of progress at every step," the spokesperson said.