A Hindu hardline group has filed a complaint with police against Twitter’s country head. Why? Because mapp on Twitter shows politically sensitive regions like Kashmir and Ladakh separate from India on its website. An investigation in a fresh headache for the US tech firm.
A map on Twitter careers page showed the Occupied Kashmir region and Buddhist enclave of Ladakh separate from India.
That provoked an outcry on social media this week that comes. This happens amid strained relations between Twitter and New Delhi over the firm’s compliance with India’s new IT rules.
The complaint accuses Twitter’s India boss Manish Maheshwari and another company executive of breaching the country’s IT rules as well as laws.
“This has hurt my sentiments and those of the people of India,” Praveen Bhati, a leader of the group Bajrang Dal in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, said in the complaint which was reviewed by Reuters. He also called it an act of treason.
Twitter did not respond to a request for comment. As of Tuesday, the map was no long visible on its site.
India VS Twitter
Maheshwari was only this month summoned by police in Uttar Pradesh for failing to stop the spread of a video that allegedly incited religious discord. Maheshwari has won relief from a court in that case.
India’s technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad also criticized Twitter. He bashed it for not abide by new Indian rules and for denying him access to his Twitter account.
The new rules came into effect in May. It says companies must appoint a chief compliance officer, a grievance officer, and another executive. They will liaise with law enforcement and the government on legal requests. LinkedIn job postings show the three positions that are open on Twitter.
A senior government official has previously told Reuters that Twitter may no longer be eligible to seek liability exemptions as an intermediary or the host of user content in India due to its failure to comply with the new IT rules.
Activists say, however, it is a matter for the courts to decide.
Last year, the head of an Indian parliamentary panel accused Twitter of disrespecting New Delhi’s sovereignty, after mapping data showed Indian occupied territory as part of China in what the social media firm said was a quickly resolved mistake.
Growing tension with New Delhi has discouraged US big tech firms about prospects for their largest growth market, so much so that some are rethinking expansion plans.
Kashmir became Pakistan earlier in Donald Trump Jr’s US electoral map prediction. Meanwhile, last year, the Pakistani cabinet approves Pakistan’s new map, showing the Indian-Occupied Kashmir as part of it. Well, reality always burns Indians.
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