India warns U.S. social media firms after dispute with Twitter

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad warned U.S. social media firms on Thursday to abide by the country's laws, a day after a face-off between Prime Minister Narendra Modi's administration and Twitter over content regulation

Reuters February 12, 2021 00:06:53 IST
India warns U.S. social media firms after dispute with Twitter

India warns US social media firms after dispute with Twitter

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad warned U.S. social media firms on Thursday to abide by the country's laws, a day after a face-off between Prime Minister Narendra Modi's administration and Twitter over content regulation.

Speaking in Parliament on Thursday, IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad mentioned Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and WhatsApp by name and said they were welcome to operate in India, but only if they play by India's rules.

"You will have to follow the Constitution of India, you will have to abide by the laws of India," Prasad said

India rebuked Twitter on Wednesday after the U.S. social media giant did not fully comply with a government order to take down over 1,100 accounts and posts that New Delhi says spread misinformation about current farmer protests against new agriculture reforms.

Twitter said it had not blocked all of the content because it believed the directives were not in line with Indian laws. It permanently suspended some accounts and geo-blocked access to many others in India, though their posts could be read outside the country, the company said.

That prompted censure from India's tech ministry and calls from politicians to urge their followers to join Twitter's home-grown local rival, Koo.

Twitter has since blocked access to the bulk of accounts it was ordered to take down, an IT ministry source told Reuters, declining to be named as he was not authorised to speak to media.

It was not immediately clear whether those accounts had been suspended or geo-blocked.

Twitter and the Indian government have not made public the complete list of accounts and posts that were ordered blocked.

A lawmaker's account was among those geo-blocked by Twitter following the government orders.

Access to the account of Sukhram Singh Yadav, a member of the upper house of Parliament, was temporarily restricted in India after Twitter received a legal request from the government, according to a filing with Lumen database.

Yadav, whose account had been restored as of Thursday, had tweeted using the hashtag #ModiPlanningFarmerGenocide, according to Indian media.

That hashtag was designed to "inflame passions, hatred and was factually incorrect", an IT ministry source previously told Reuters, explaining why the government asked Twitter to ban content carrying it.

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Sankalp Phartiyal; Editing by Jan Harvey and Frances Kerry)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro at ₹499 for the first year. Use code PRO499. Limited period offer. *T&C apply

also read

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale
Business

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale

By Christoph Steitz, Tom Käckenhoff and Arno Schuetze FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp ended talks to sell its steel division to Britain's Liberty Steel due to differences over value, the latest setback in efforts to consolidate the European sector. Liberty Steel, led by commodities tycoon Sanjeev Gupta, last month submitted a firmed-up non-binding bid for Thyssenkrupp's steel unit, Europe's second biggest in terms of sales, which sources said included commitments to protect jobs and sites.

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo
Business

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo

(Reuters) - Reddit trading lingo may filter in to Washington on Thursday when top hedge fund managers, the head of Robinhood and Roaring Kitty himself are set to give testimony before U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers.

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze
Business

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze

By Stephanie Kelly NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices steadied on Thursday, with Brent edging back from a 13-month high, after a sharp drop in U.S. crude inventories supported prices, while buying spurred by a cold snap in the largest U.S. energy-producing state petered out.