Rajeev Chandrasekhar says Jack Dorsey's claims of India threatening to shut down Twitter is an "Outright Lie" | Tech News

Rajeev Chandrasekhar says Jack Dorsey's claims of India threatening to shut down Twitter is an "Outright Lie"

Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar responded to the claims by former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey that India threatened to shut down Twitter and called it an "outright lie".

By: HT TECH
| Updated on: Jun 13 2023, 14:01 IST
Twitter
After Twitter cofounder and former CEO Jack Dorsey claimed that the Indian government threatened to shut down Twitter offices and raid their employees' houses, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar has said these claims are an "outright lie". (AP)
Twitter
After Twitter cofounder and former CEO Jack Dorsey claimed that the Indian government threatened to shut down Twitter offices and raid their employees' houses, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar has said these claims are an "outright lie". (AP)

Just hours after a shocking video interview of Twitter cofounder and former CEO Jack Dorsey was posted online, where he made allegations against the Indian government and said they threatened to shut down Twitter offices in India if they did not block accounts that were critical of the government during the farmer's protest, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar has responded in a tweet, and called the claims an “outright lie”. He also said that Dorsey and his team were found in repeated and continuous violations of Indian laws. 

Chandrasekhar tweeted, “This is an outright lie by @jack - perhaps an attempt to brush out that very dubious period of twitters history". Then, headlining the next part of his tweet as ‘Facts and truth', he added, “@twitter undr Dorsey n his team were in repeated n continuous violations of India law. As a matter of fact they were in non-compliance with law repeatedly from 2020 to 2022 and it was only June 2022 when they finally complied”.

"No one went to jail nor was twitter “shutdown”. Dorseys Twitter regime had a problem accepting the sovereignty of Indian law. It behaved as if the laws of India did not apply to it. India as a sovereign nation has the right to ensure that its laws are followed by all companies operating in India". 

Rajeev Chandrasekhar responds to Jack Dorsey's allegations

The Union Minister also went over the events during the farmer's protest and said there was a lot of misinformation and even reports of genocide on Twitter that was “definitely fake” and that the government of India was obligated to remove such fake news that could “further inflame the situation”.

“Such was the level of partisan behaviour on Twitter under Jack regime, that they had a problem removing misinformation from the platform in India, when they did it themselves when similar events took place in the USA," he added.

Chandrasekhar explained, “To set the record straight, no one was raided or sent to jail. Our focus was only on ensuring the compliance of Indian laws”. 

“There is ample evidence now in public domain abt Jacks twitter's arbitrary, blatantly partisan n discriminatory conduct and misuse of its power on its platform during that period,” he said. 

"Twitter under Dorsey was not just violating Indian law, but was partisan in how it was using "deamplify" n deplatforming of some arbitrarily in violation of Art 14,19 of our constitution and also assisting in weaponising of misinformation," the Union Minister said.

“Our govts policies remain clear for all Intermediaries operating in India - compliance with laws to ensure Internet is Safe&Trusted, Accountable,” Chandrasekhar concluded.

Officials react to the allegations 

Former IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad reacted to the allegations and said, “At the time, Twitter didn't comply with Indian laws. It is clear that all social media platforms are respected in India but they have to abide by the law of the land”.

“There were instances when tweets from beyond the borders encouraged and provoked violence and terrorism, and we did tell Twitter to take such posts down,” he added.

Union Minister Anurag Thakur also spoke on the issue. He said, “What was said, is a blatant lie. Jack Dorsey woke up after years of sleep & wants to cover up his misdeeds. When Twitter was bought by another person, it was revealed in 'Twitter Files' how was the platform being misused. Jack Dorsey has not been able to answer this to date because he was exposed...Several foreign forces wake up when elections approach India...” as per a tweet by ANI.

Jack Dorsey claimed the Indian government threatened Twitter

Speaking in the Breaking Points podcast series, Dorsey was asked about anecdotal examples of pressures from foreign governments during the time when he headed Twitter. Responding to the question, Dorsey said that the Indian government “had many requests” around farmer's protests and particular journalists that were critical of the government. He also said that the government threatened Twitter to shut down its offices and raid the houses of employees if the requests were not met.

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First Published Date: 13 Jun, 09:26 IST
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