TechnologyIndia To Shut Down Twitter, Raid Employees

India To Shut Down Twitter, Raid Employees

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The Indian government threatened to shut down Twitter and raid employees’ house in the country, alleged the former CEO, Jack Dorsey of the social media platform.

India To Shut Down Twitter, Raid Employees' Houses in the Country - Jack

As per BBC reports, in an interview with a US-based YouTube channel, Mr Dorsey said India requested removal of several tweets and accounts linked to the farmers’ protest in 2020.

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Twitter was also asked to censor journalists critical of the government, he alleged.

India has denied the allegations and accused Twitter of violating laws.

“This is an outright lie… Perhaps an attempt to brush out that very dubious period of Twitter’s history,” federal minister Rajeev Chandrashekar tweeted on Tuesday.

“No one went to jail nor was Twitter ‘shutdown’. Dorsey’s Twitter regime had a problem accepting the sovereignty of Indian law. It behaved as if the laws of India did not apply to it.”

Mr Dorsey’s comments – made to the American news series Breaking Points – are the latest in an already troubled relationship between Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government and Twitter.

It also comes at a time when the platform has been caught up in an intensifying debate on its role in supporting principles of free speech amid demands in several countries to control Twittter’s influence.

Mr Dorsey quit as the Twitter CEO in 2021 and the social media platform was purchased by billionaire Elon Musk in 2022.

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In the interview, which was uploaded on YouTube on Monday, Mr Dorsey said “countries like India and Turkey made many requests to us to take down journalists’ accounts that give tactile information and remove them from the platform”.

He added that he was “surprised at the level of engagement and requests” by governments of the world to censor content on the platform during his time.

“India, for example, was a country that had many requests around the farmers’ protests, around particular journalists that were critical of the government,” he said.

“It manifested in ways such as: ‘we will shut Twitter down in India’ – which is a very large market for us; ‘we will raid the homes of your employees,’ which they did; ‘we will shut down your offices if you don’t follow suit.’ And this is India, a democratic country,” Mr Dorsey told the show’s hosts Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjeti.

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