AR Rahman’s song is reason why IT minister RS Prasad’s Twitter was blocked

New Delhi: Union minister for electronics and information technology Ravi Shankar Prasad on Friday said that Twitter locked him out of his account on the platform for almost an hour over an alleged copyright infringement.

This development comes amid a dispute between the social media company and the central government over the issue of compliance with new IT rules.

Prasad said that the company denied him access on the grounds that he violated the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). The access to the account was subsequently restored. 

Post that, not only Prasad criticized the micro-blogging platform for its action, he also added that Twitter’s actions were in gross violation of Rule 4 (8) of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, as it failed to provide him any prior notice before denying him access.

“Twitter’s actions indicate that they are not the harbinger of free speech that they claim to be but are only interested in running their own agenda, with the threat that if you do not tow the line they draw, they will arbitrarily remove you from their platform,” Prasad wrote, in a series of tweets, after his account was restored.

But the reason is not what he claims it to be.

Apparently, it was Oscar-winning music composer AR Rahman’s popular song ‘Maa Tujhe Salaam’ that got him into trouble, Lumen Database revealed. The song is copyrighted by Sony Music Entertainment.

International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) had lodged a complaint on behalf of the Sony Music Entertainment on May 24, 2021 after a media tweet of Prasad used the song, India Today said in an exclusive report.

Lumen Database said that the tweet in question dates back to December 2017, when Prasad had used the ‘Maa Tujhe Salaam’ video while writing about India’s 1971 victory over Pakistan.

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