'Twitter must be cognisant of local laws while operating in India': Ravi Shankar Prasad
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: In a fresh hit at Twitter, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday (June 30) said that if the American microblogging and social networking service invoked a US law to block his official account temporarily, it should also be aware of the local laws while functioning in India.
Prasad was speaking at the Indian Global Forum when he mentioned that Twitter blocked his account last week for an hour pertaining to a complaint filed four years ago under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of the US.
"If you are going to invoke the... digital copyright act of America then you have to also be cognizant of the copyright rules of India. That is the point. You cannot say my whole stand will be regulated by an ex-parte assessment of the US law. For a happy blending of the role of big tech and democracy, a solution has to be found," Prasad said.
He also added that social media companies are welcome to do business in India but they have to adhere to the Indian Constitution and laws. Further, Prasad mentioned the issue of social media in India is "around abuse of the rights of victims on those problems and the companies' accountability."
"If democracy has to survive misinformation, fake news, colluded material...all these are challenges. I am not in favour of censoring but democracies have to find a common ground as far as these issues are concerned so that these big tech companies do their business, earn good money, good profit but become accountable. This can only happen if you follow law of the land," Prasad said.
The Union Minister's statement comes at a time when Twitter has still not complied with the new IT rules for social media companies in India. The new rules promise to establish a grievance redressal system in order to resolve complaints from the users or victims. As per the new IT policy, all significant social media companies, with over 50 lakh users, will have to appoint a chief compliance officer, a nodal contact person, and a grievance officer. All of them have to be residents in India.
Posted By: Talibuddin Khan