Just four days after cartoonist Manjul received a notice from Twitter, stating that it had received a legal request from Indian law enforcement to take action against his social media account, the political cartoonist was suspended with “immediate effect” from Mukesh Ambani-owned Network 18 on Tuesday, 8 June, The Wire reported.
Several leaders slammed the Narendra Modi regime, calling it a ‘dictatorship’ in response to the notice issued by Twitter to the cartoonist.
Manjul was intimated by Twitter on 4 June, following which he shared the e-mail he had received from the company with the caption, “Jai ho Modi Ji ki sarkar ki!” He also said it would have been better if the government mentioned, which tweet of his had caused a problem.
Though the government has alleged that one of Manjul’s tweets “violates the law(s) of India”, the social media giant mentioned that they had not taken any action against him for the time being and suggested that the cartoonist seek legal counsel and challenge the government’s request in court, or contact civil society organisations for finding a resolution or voluntarily delete the content.
The cartoonist has posted several illustrations criticising the Centre’s handling of the COVID outbreak, exposing the grim reality of the devastating second wave of the pandemic, and how several people did not have access to healthcare.
Manjul had even posted illustrations on the clash between Twitter and the Modi government over an alleged Congress document.
Meanwhile, Manjul’s suspension comes after working with Network 18 on a contract basis for the past six years.
Saying that there was no indication that he would be suspended, sources at Network 18 said that the sudden move had taken them by surprise, The Wire reported.
Many people on social media expressed solidarity with the cartoonist.
(With inputs from The Wire)