The sudden takedown of a Facebook page, Kisan Ekta Morcha, which is documenting the ongoing protests against the controversial farm laws has generated massive outrage on social media.
Facebook restored the page saying that the ban was due to increased activity on the page that was mistaken for spam. The ban has been lifted as they figured out the context, said a spokesperson for Facebook. The brief ban was also imposed on their Instagram page too, which is now fully restored.
Since morning, social media has been abuzz with criticism against Facebook. Several users expressed their disappointment with the move and hashtags like #BanFacebook, #ShameOnFacebook and #ZuckerbergShameOnYou have been trending on Twitter.
People alleged that Facebook is complicit with the current government and that the move was a tactic of suppressing dissent.
Twitter users alleged that Facebook’s move is extremely hypocritical in light of a recent report by The Wall Street Journal. The report revealed that Facebook’s safety team found Bajrang Dal’s involvement in violence against minorities earlier this year and had concluded that the organization should be banned from the platform. However, no action was taken by the organization.
Other users pointed to Facebook’s recent investment in Jio alleging complicity. Earlier this year, Facebook announced a Rs 43,574 crore ($5.7 billion) investment in Reliance Jio Platforms Limited. With this, Facebook will hold a 9.99 percent stake in Jio Platforms and will be the biggest minority shareholder.
A spokesperson for the company said that they regret the inconvenience caused and added that they began the restoration process immediately after they realized their mistake.
In response to a query from The Quint, the company explained that the page was banned as the website’s automated systems flagged the page as spam due to excessive activity and that they restored it in three hours.