Representatives of social media platform Twitter on 18 June appeared before the parliamentary panel chaired by INC MP Shashi Tharoor to discuss the issue of its guidelines and the misuse of its platform.
When asked whether Twitter India followed the law of the land, the company responded that the platform followed its own policies, sources said.
“We practise our own policies,” it said.
The committee asked Twitter representatives present before it to submit in writing how they were placed within the social media platform and how much executive authority they had over policy decisions made.
“Twitter stands prepared to work with the committee on important work of safeguarding citizens’ rights online in line with our principles of transparency, freedom of expression, & privacy,” the Twitter spokespersons said.
They said further that Twitter would continue to work alongside the Indian government as part of its shared commitment to serve and protect public conversation.
The panel had summoned Twitter for a representation on prevention of misuse of the social media platform only days after the union government issued a notice to the social media platform.
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information and Technology has summoned several social media giants, including Facebook and Twitter, on issues related to misuse of the platforms and protection of citizens’ rights.
Twitter and the Narendra Modi government are at loggerheads on several issues for the last few months. The social media platform found itself in fresh controversy when it had briefly removed the blue tick verification badge from the personal account of Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu and of several senior RSS functionaries including its chief Mohan Bhagwat.
The Modi government has been wary of the ways of Twitter since the heckling of former US President Donald Trump during his campaign by constantly marking his tweets as unreliable and finally deletion of his account by the social media company following his defeat in the election of that country. Matters went south when the company singled out the BJP for similar treatment in India by marking tweets by the party’s leaders and spokespersons as “manipulated“.