Police in the Indian capital issued a notice to Twitter offices late Monday, seeking information about a complaint that a tweet from a spokesman for the ruling Hindu-Nationalist Party was used as “manipulative media”. Why tagged.
Tensions between the Indian government and a US social media company have risen sharply this year after a number of accounts related to farmers’ protests near Delhi were blocked following a request from authorities. The government claims that the posts are intended to incite violence. Twitter said it believed the guidelines were not in line with Indian law.
An Indian climate worker was arrested in February for helping create a guide for farmers protesting against the law, tweeted environmentalist Greta Thonberg.
Last month, the government also ordered Twitter and Facebook to delete dozens of posts criticized by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for tackling the corona virus crisis.
The latest incident comes after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Sambit Patra labeled Twitter as a “manipulative media” on Tuesday.
He shared a document that allegedly showed the opposition Congress party’s master plan to counter the BJP’s efforts to tackle the epidemic.
The Congress tweeted that it had sent a letter to Twitter headquarters in the United States demanding the permanent suspension of Petra’s account as well as that of several other BJP representatives. The opposition party said the joint document was a forgery.
Delhi Police confirmed to AFP that they had gone to Twitter offices to submit notices about the tweet, saying it was part of a “normal process”.
“Delhi Police is investigating a complaint seeking clarification from Twitter regarding the classification of Shri Sambit Patra’s tweet as ‘manipulation’,” the police said in a statement.
“It seems that Twitter has some information that we don’t know on the basis of which they have categorized it as such. This information is related to the inquiry.
A Twitter spokesman told AFP there was no comment from police about the visit.
Under Twitter’s rules, a post is tagged as “manipulative media” if it contains “media (videos, audio, and images) that have been fraudulently altered or fabricated.”
A well-known fact-finding organization, Altnews, has said it has analyzed the documents and claimed that some were created with fake letterheads.
Modi and the BJP have been criticized for their slow response to the new wave of Covid 19 infections, which has brought India’s healthcare system to a standstill.
The BJP, through its social media forces, has accused the state governments and others of ignoring their claims that Modi’s second wave was repeatedly warned.
India is in the grip of a devastating wave of queerness. More than 26.7 million coronavirus infections and more than 300,000 deaths have been reported in the country alone, according to health ministry figures, but experts warn that the actual number could be much higher.
There are about 17 17.5 million Twitter users in India.
Agence France-Presse contributed to this report
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