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After UP, Twitter MD Booked in Bhopal Over Distorted India Map

The map showed a distorted Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh as a separate country on Twitter’s website. 

Updated
India
3 min read
Twitter website had shown a distorted version of the map of India.
i

The Bhopal Cyber Cell on Tuesday, 29 June, registered an FIR against Twitter India Managing Director Manish Maheshwari under Section 505 of IT Act after the platform displayed, and later removed, a distorted map of India on its website on Monday, reported news agency ANI.

This comes hours after Maheshwari was booked in Uttar Pradesh over the same issue.

Maheshwari has been booked Section 505 (2) (statements conducing to public mischief) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 74 of the IT (Amendment) Act, 2008 (publication for fraudulent purpose), for showing a wrong map of India on its website, on a complaint of a Bajrang Dal leader in UP's Bulandshahr, according to ANI.

WHAT HAD HAPPENED?

A row ensued on Monday after it came to light that the microblogging platform had displayed a map on its website, which showed Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh as a separate country, and detached from India.

The map appeared as part of the world map in the career section of Twitter's website. Twitter later removed the world map altogether from the section of the website under the header 'Tweep Life'.

Earlier, on Monday, BJP leader P Muralidhar Rao had said in a tweet, “Twitter is confirming by its actions the apprehensions expressed widely in last few months about its bias towards Indian interests and sensitivities.”

WHAT HAPPENED IN THE LONI CASE?

This comes at a time when the company is embroiled in a tussle with the Indian government over the new IT rules. Moreover, this was not the first time that Twitter showed a distorted map of India.

The Twitter India MD is also under the scanner in a case involving posts on the alleged assault on a Muslim man in Uttar Pradesh’s Loni district earlier in June.

The UP Police had sent a legal notice to Maheshwari in connection with the case.

However, the Karnataka High Court bench of Justice G Narendar had granted interim relief to him under Section 41A of the CrPC last week, and directed the Ghaziabad Police not to take any coercive steps. The matter had been posted for 29 June.

The UP government on 29 June moved the Supreme Court against the order of protection granted by the Karnataka HC. The Twitter MD, meanwhile, filed a caveat in the apex court, which will be heard when the UP government's appeal is listed.

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THE ROW OVER IT RULES

Earlier on Sunday, Twitter India’s interim grievance officer Dharmendra Chatur had stepped down from his post. Chatur’s name, as required under the new rules, was earlier displayed on the company’s website, but it is no longer there.

Instead, Twitter appointed California-based Jeremy Kessel as its new Grievance Redressal Officer for India, after Chatur’s resignation.

The new IT rules, which came into effect on 25 May, make it mandatory for the company to have a grievance officer to address complaints from the users. Under the new rules, all social media companies with over 50 lakh users have to appoint a chief compliance officer, a nodal contact person, and a grievance officer.

The government has been slamming Twitter for defying the rules and not complying with them. However, the company has been maintaining that it has been taking steps to comply with the rules.

(With inputs from ANI)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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