Twitter is in breach of rules, could lose immunity: Govt | India News

Twitter is in breach of rules, could lose immunity: Govt | India News

NEW DELHI: Twitter is in breach of India’s new IT Rules and liable to face punishment under existing laws, the Centre told the Delhi high court on Monday.
The government added that any non-compliance with “the law of the land” would lead to the US-based platform losing its immunity as a social media intermediary under the IT Act. The immunity is in connection with third-party data hosted on such platforms.
In its affidavit, the ministry of electronics and information technology (MEITY) listed the “violations” by Twitter, saying the company had, as of July 1, failed to appoint a chief compliance officer, while the positions of resident grievance officer and of a nodal contact person (even on interim basis) lay vacant. The ministry also underlined that the physical contact address, which was shown to be there on May 29, was not available again on the Twitter website, arguing that all these steps are mandatory under the new rules.
It maintained that the three-month period for compliance granted to all significant social media intermediaries (SSMI) under the IT Rules, 2021, including Twitter, ended on May 26 this year, yet the company had “failed to fully comply”.
The affidavit has been filed in response to a plea by lawyer Amit Acharya claiming the microblogging platform was not in compliance with the Centre’s new IT Rules.
In its affidavit, the ministry said it was informed that Twitter’s grievance officer had quit. But “as per details gleaned from respondent no. 2 website/mobile application, in the interim the grievances from India are being handled by personnel situated in the US, which amounts to non-compliance with the IT Rules, 2021,” it noted.
The reply added that the immunity conferred on intermediaries under the law was conditional, subject to the intermediaries satisfying conditions under the act. Failure to observe the IT Rules, 2021 results in such entities losing immunity and becoming liable to face punishment under existing laws, it said.

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