Twitter vs Indian government saga keeps taking a fresh turn every day. The micro-blogging platform recently filed a request for judicial review in the Karnataka High Court challenging some of the content takedown orders that the Indian government issued to the company. Now, reports state that Twitter in its case to the Karnataka HC has submitted that the notices issued by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) are not in line with the Section 69A of the Indian IT Act, 2000. Also Read - Twitter’s new Co-Tweets feature will let you co-author a tweet with a friend
In its plea, the company has contended that the orders issued by the ministry fail to show how the take down orders for the accounts and pieces of content that the orders mentioned justify the tailored grounds of Section 69A. Furthermore, the company said the orders to be ‘manifestly arbitrary and procedurally and substantially not in consonance with Section 69A of the IT Act’. Also Read - Elon Musk's $44 billion Twitter deal in serious trouble: Report
Furthermore, the company in its case has contend that the Section 69A of the Indian IT Act, 2000 only allows blocking the information that is already available on a particular platform, in this case Twitter, and that it does not extend to preventing the information from being generated, stored, received, transferred or hosted. Simply said, it does not extend to account level blocking. And so, blocking certain accounts, which the ministry requested was in turn a violation of the Section 69A of the Indian IT Act. Also Read - Twitter vs India: Big Tech must follow law of the land, says govt
Notably, the Indian government has responded to Twitter’s move of requesting a judicial review of its take down orders saying that all the companies operating in India must follow the law of the land. Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar in a post on Twitter said that all foreign intermediaries and platforms have the right judicial review in the country but they also have the obligation to comply with the laws.
In India,all incldng foreign Internet intermediaries/platforms have right to court n judicial review.
— Rajeev Chandrasekhar 🇮🇳 (@Rajeev_GoI) July 5, 2022
Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw also reiterated this thoughts. “…be it any company, in any sector, they should abide by the laws of India,” he said.