Delhi Police interrogates Twitter India MD over ‘toolkit row’: Sources

New Delhi: A senior-level team of Delhi Police’s Special Cell interrogated Twitter India managing director Manish Maheshwari at Bengaluru over the ‘Congress toolkit case’ matter on May 31, the sources said on Thursday.

The Delhi Police had earlier sent a notice to Twitter, seeking an explanation from the microblogging platform to explain the rationale and share all the information on how it described the toolkit as manipulated media.

The police had also visited the Twitter India offices in Lado Sarai, Delhi and Gurgaon on May 24 with the notice over the tagging some of the posts on an alleged Congress “toolkit” against the Central government, as “manipulated media”.

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Earlier, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology had written to Twitter objecting to it tagging some of the posts on an alleged Congress “toolkit” against the Central government, as “manipulated media”.

It asked Twitter to remove the tag as the matter is pending investigation before a law enforcement agency.

Meanwhile, Twitter has lost its status as an intermediary platform in India as it does not comply with new IT rules. According to the sources, Twitter is the only social media platform among the mainstream that has not adhered to the new laws.

Now, instead of being considered just a platform hosting content from various users, Twitter will be held directly editorially responsible for posts published on its platform.

The implication of this development is that if there is any charge against Twitter for alleged unlawful content it would be treated as a publisher – not an intermediary – and be liable for punishment under any law, including IT Act, as also the penal laws of the country, sources stated.

Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) had on June 5 said that it had given Twitter one last notice to comply with the new rules concerning social media companies.

The ministry said in the letter that the New Intermediary Guideline Rules have become effective from May 26.

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