Twitter faces backlash in India, gets 48-hours deadline to explain why it blocked accounts of RS Prasad, Shashi Tharoor

Twitter has been a part of a raging controversy in India for quite some time now and things have gone from bad to worse after it blocked more accounts recently.

| Updated on: Aug 21 2022, 18:33 IST
Twitter (REUTERS)
Twitter (REUTERS)

In yet another setback for Twitter in India, the messaging platform has come under attack for its actions here. Twitter had blocked accounts of Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Congress MP Shashi Tharoor without any warning. Now, according to PTI sources, a Parliamentary panel has given Twitter just 48 hours to explain why it had taken such an extreme step.

This newest development has further added to the already simmering row in which Twitter is involved with the government over its acts of omission and commission, including interpretation of new IT rules and for not following local laws.

The panel was instructed by Tharoor to seek reply from Twitter on the blocking of access to accounts of Prasad and others on its platform, the sources said.

In a surprising trn of events last week, Twitter had blocked Union Information and Technology Minister Prasad from accessing his account. Twitter denied Prasad access to his account '@rsprasad' for almost an hour on the grounds that he violated the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, but the minister said the microblogging platform violated new IT rules that require intermediary or a host of user content to give prior notice before locking access.

The IT Minister had then called out Twitter over the brazen arbitrariness and running its "own agenda".

Soon after Prasad flagged the issue, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor tweeted that he too had faced something similar.

"Raviji, the same thing just happened to me. Clearly DMCA is getting hyperactive. This tweet has been deleted by @Twitter because its video includes the copyrighted BoneyM song 'Rasputin'," Tharoor tweeted.

Prasad had then lashed out at Twitter, and in a series of posts on rival social media platform Koo, said it was apparent that his statements calling out the "high handedness and arbitrary actions" of Twitter, had ruffled feathers.

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First Published Date: 29 Jun, 23:56 IST