Elon Musk Slams Twitter's 'Risky' Suit Against Indian Govt in US Court Battle

In its reply, Twitter accused Musk of fabricating a story to escape an agreement he was no longer interested in.

3 min read
Edited By :Saundarya Talwar

American billionaire Elon Musk, who is being sued by Twitter after he backed out of his buyout deal with the tech company, told the court that the microblogging platform jeopardised its third largest market by failing to disclose its "risky" suit against the Indian government and disobeying its laws.

Twitter should follow the local laws in India, Musk said in a countersuit in the Delaware court, as per his affidavit being circulated on social media.

"In 2021, India's information technology ministry imposed certain rules allowing the government to probe social media posts, demand identifying information, and prosecute companies that refused to comply. While Musk is a proponent of free speech, he believes that moderation on Twitter should "hew close to the laws of countries in which Twitter operates.""
Elon Musk's filing in court

In July, Twitter had filed a case challenging Indian government orders to take down certain content.


"Twitter avers that it has challenged certain blocking orders issued by the Indian government under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, directing Twitter to remove certain content from its platform, including content from politicians, activists, and journalists... " the tech company said in its response to Musk, as per the court filing.

It has maintained in its reply that the litigation was necessary to "defend its users' rights, including freedom of expression."

Elon Musk Accuses Twitter of Fraud in Buyout Deal

The Tesla CEO has accused Twitter of fraud, alleging that the company misled him regarding several key aspects of the business before he agreed to a buyout agreement.

Musk alleged in his filing in a Delaware court that the number of users shown advertising on Twitter was around 65 million lower than the company's 238 million figure, news agency AFP reported.

"Twitter's disclosures have slowly unraveled, with Twitter frantically closing the gates on information in a desperate bid to prevent the Musk Parties from uncovering its fraud," Musk's claim stated.

Musk's claim was filed on 30 July, and was made public on Thursday, 4 August.

Musk, who indicated that he was acquiring Twitter to ensure free speech and rid the platform of bots and fake accounts, decided to back out of the deal on 10 July.

The Tesla boss has also urged the court to free him from his agreement with Twitter, and make the latter pay him an amount in damages.

The trial of the case is scheduled to begin on 17 October.

'As Implausible as It Sounds': Twitter Slams Musk

In its filing, the social media giant rejected Musk's argument, saying that it was "as implausible and contrary to fact as it sounds."

"According to Musk, he - the billionaire founder of multiple companies, advised by Wall Street bankers and lawyers - was hoodwinked by Twitter into signing a $44 billion merger agreement," the company said.

The businessman had accused Twitter of not only deceiving him, but also lying to market regulators in the United States (US).

Twitter, whose shares were up by around 3.5 percent to $42.51 on Friday, has stuck to its position that less than five percent of its online activity is due to software bots instead of people.

The company accused Musk of fabricating a story to escape an agreement that he was no longer interested in.

"Twitter has complied in every respect with the merger agreement," the firm had said in its filing at the Chancery Court.

"Musk's counterclaims, based as they are on distortion, misrepresentation, and outright deception, change nothing," they added.

(With inputs from AFP.)

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Edited By :Saundarya Talwar
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