Govt looking into Twitter displaying wrong map of India

The map, which shows Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir as a separate country, is available on the company’s website under careers sections on the page titled Tweep Life
Representational Image. (File photo)
Representational Image. (File photo)
Published on Jun 28, 2021 04:04 PM IST
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By Deeksha Bhardwaj

The ministry of electronics and information is looking into the issue of Twitter displaying a wrong map of India, an official familiar with the matter said on Monday. The misrepresentation caused an uproar online amid the ongoing impasse between the government and the microblogging platform.

The map, which shows Ladakh, and Jammu and Kashmir as a separate country, is available on the company’s website under careers sections on the page titled Tweep Life.

HT reached out to Twitter but did not receive a response immediately.

This is the second time Twitter has misrepresented India’s map. In October last year, the Centre had served Twitter with a notice over the geotag for Leh showing it as a part of China. Writing to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, the Centre on October 22 conveyed its “disappointment regarding the misrepresentation of the map of India”.

It also asked Twitter to explain why action should not be taken against it and the micro-blogging site resolved the issue.

Also Read | Twitter appoints American Jeremy Kessel as new grievance officer for India

In December last year, the government warned Wikipedia for misrepresenting the country’s borders.Since it was a particular page, it issued Wikipedia an order to scrap it. “The secretary further adds that it violates the territorial integrity of the country, and it is well within the power of the ministry under section 69A to order it to be be taken down,” HT quoted one of the ministry officials as saying then.

The current map fiasco comes at a time when the company is engaged in an escalating battle with the government over the new controversial social media and intermediary guidelines.

The ministry has asserted that the social media firm has failed to comply with the guidelines, which can result in it losing the safe harbour protection granted to intermediaries under the IT Act. Twitter, in turn, has raised concerns about the safety of its employees in India and flagged intimidation by the police. There have been several instances of confrontation between the social media firm and the government over orders to block access to content and marking of posts by BJP leaders as manipulated media. Twitter’s grievance redressal officer Dharmendra Chatur also stepped down over the weekend, prompting the firm to hire a new official.

Assistant professor of political science at the University of Albany, Christopher Clary, however, said that according to analysis, Twitter was also misrepresenting the map of the US. “By this analysis, I guess Twitter is also showing at least 10 American states as separate countries,” Clary tweeted.

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Saturday, October 23, 2021