Twitter accounts in India: The Government of India has ordered microblogging site Twitter to block 1,178 accounts for allegedly spreading misinformation on farmers’ protests. The Union IT Ministry gave Twitter a list of 1,178 accounts flagged by security agencies as having links with supporters of Pakistan or being run by Khalistan sympathizers. The Government said that the accounts were being operated from foreign territories and were spreading misinformation and provocative content regarding the farmers’ protest, causing a threat to the public order. Among these accounts were also some automated bots used to share and amplify misinformation and inflammatory content.
However, Twitter has not yet complied with the Government’s order.
The ministry had earlier ordered Twitter to take down hashtags and handled indicating the planning of a farmer genocide and had said that the propagation of such provocative content could impact public order and incite violence. The ministry had handed over a list of 257 URLs and one hashtag, which needed to be blocked under the relevant legal section. The microblogging site had also been warned of penal action if it did not go through with the Government’s order, and so, Twitter had blocked such accounts before unblocking them a few hours later.
The new order has now come even as the microblogging site is yet to comply with the older one completely. Reports have also suggested that the ministry is not happy that Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, has recently liked several tweets supporting farmer protests posted by foreign celebrities.