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GoI issues executive orders to X to block specific X accounts and posts

As per a tweet by X’s Global Government Affairs, the platform will be complying the with government order despite feeling it’s a violation of people’s free speech rights

What’s the news: “The Indian government has issued executive orders requiring X to act on specific accounts and posts, subject to potential penalties including significant fines and imprisonment,” said X’s (formerly Twitter) Global Government Affairs account on the platform on February 22, 2024. In the announcement, X said that while it will comply with the government order, it views the same as an infringement on the free speech rights of these accounts. The news comes days after reports of multiple farmers accounts being withheld. X announced that it would restrict access to the specified accounts and posts within India in compliance with the government's directive. It also shared the notice of these copies with the impacted users but said that it cannot publish the executive orders “due to legal restrictions.” “…we believe that making them [executive orders] public is essential for transparency. This lack of disclosure can lead to a lack of accountability and arbitrary decision-making,” said X. https://twitter.com/GlobalAffairs/status/1760387644608192560 Accounts allegedly violate IT Act, 2000: On February 21, Bhavika Kapoor, an X user who used to tweet publicly about the farmers’ protest, Manipur violence, electoral bonds among other things, posted a Twitter thread wherein she claimed that the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) sent the orders. The mail sent by X stated that her account violated provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000. https://twitter.com/bhavi_kap/status/1760325132919406928 She also shared screenshots of her tweets that were blocked which included criticism regarding the drone-usage to drop tear-gas shells on farmers travelling from…

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I'm interested in the shaping and strengthening of rights in the digital space. I cover cybersecurity, platform regulation, gig worker economy. In my free time, I'm either binge-watching an anime or off on a hike.

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