Parliamentary panel seeks Twitter’s response within 2 days on locking accounts of Ravi Shankar Prasad, Shashi Tharoor

Updated on Jun 29, 2021 10:31 PM IST

The panel, headed by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, had also directed its secretariat to seek the company’s reply on the issue in writing within the mentioned time frame.

“As Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, I can state that we will be seeking an explanation from @TwitterIndia for the locking of @rsprasad's & my accounts" Shashi Tharoor tweeted earlier on June 25,(PTI)
“As Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, I can state that we will be seeking an explanation from @TwitterIndia for the locking of @rsprasad's & my accounts" Shashi Tharoor tweeted earlier on June 25,(PTI)
By | Written by Srivatsan K C, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The Parliamentary panel for Information Technology on Tuesday had sought the response of microblogging site Twitter within two days, regarding locking the handles of IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, news agency ANI reported. The panel’s secretariat had also sent a letter to this effect to the company on the day.

The panel, headed by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, had also directed its secretariat to seek the company’s reply on the issue in writing within the mentioned time frame.

“Twitter will have to give [a] written answer to the committee within 48 hours, why and under what rule Twitter blocked Twitter accounts of IT minister Ravi Shankar Pradesh and senior Congress MP Shashi Tharoor,” news agency ANI said, citing unnamed sources.

Also, if the committee does not receive a satisfactory reply from Twitter, the panel has also asked to summon the Twitter official regarding the issue.

Earlier on June 25, electronics and Information Technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad took to Twitter to announce that his access to his account was denied for a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of the USA and access was later restored.

Also read | Madhya Pradesh government to take action against Twitter over wrong map

He called the incident “peculiar” and said “Twitter’s actions were in gross violation of Rule 4(8) of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021 where they failed to provide me any prior notice before denying me access to my own account.”

Tharoor also tweeted about a similar experience and said that one of his videos was deleted for the violation of the same rule. He said that the IT minister had pointed to possible violation of Indian regulations while Twitter tried conforming to foreign rules.

“As Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, I can state that we will be seeking an explanation from @TwitterIndia for the locking of @rsprasad's & my accounts & the rules & procedures they follow while operating in India,” Tharoor tweeted on June 25, affirming that Twitter would be asked for an explanation.

Subsequently Twitter also landed in another trouble after a distorted map of India was depicted in their site’s careers section under the header ‘Tweep Life.’ The controversial map showed Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh as separate entities. Following severe backlash, Twitter removed the map on Monday. However, legal complaints have been filed against the company by police in some states such as Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.

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