Union Data Expertise Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday requested social media platforms to not lecture India on “freedom of speech” and “democracy”, and asserted that if these “profit-making” corporations wish to earn cash in India, they must comply with the “Indian Structure and Indian legal guidelines”.
Addressing a lecture on the subject ‘Social Media & Social Safety’ and ‘Felony Justice System Reforms: An Unfinished Agenda’ organized by Symbiosis Worldwide College as a part of the Symbiosis Golden Jubilee Lecture Sequence, the minister mentioned the brand new IT pointers don’t cope with using social media, however with the “abuse” and “misuse” of social media platforms.
The brand new IT guidelines, which have been initially introduced in February, give customers of the platform a discussion board for redressal for his or her grievances, Prasad mentioned, including that they’re geared toward regulating content material on social media corporations and making likes of Fb, WhatsApp, and Twitter extra accountable to authorized requests for swift elimination of posts and sharing of particulars on the originators of messages.
“The brand new guidelines require social media corporations to arrange an India-based grievance redressal officer, compliance officer, and the nodal officer in order that hundreds of thousands of social media customers get a discussion board for grievance redressal,” Prasad mentioned, including that nobody was “asking for the moon” by getting corporations to nominate three officers based mostly within the nation for this objective.
“These are primary necessities. Let me reiterate emphatically that India doesn’t want a lecture on freedom of speech and democracy from a profit-making firm that stays in America. India has free and truthful elections, an unbiased judiciary, media, civil society. Right here I’m speaking to college students and taking questions, and that is true democracy. So these profit-making corporations mustn’t lecture us on democracy,” he mentioned.
“When Indian corporations go to do enterprise in America, do they not comply with American legal guidelines? You earn good cash, good income as India is a digital market, there isn’t any drawback. Criticize the prime minister, criticize me, ask robust questions, however why would you not obey Indian legal guidelines? If you wish to do enterprise in India, it’s important to comply with India’s Structure and India’s legal guidelines,” the minister, who additionally holds the legislation and justice portfolio, emphasised.
Prasad mentioned these corporations acquired three months to adjust to the brand new IT guidelines, the interval expiring on Might 26.
“I mentioned I’ll give them additional time by a manner of goodwill gesture. They didn’t comply. Subsequently, it was exhausted due to the implications of the legislation and never due to me. Now, what is going to occur? They must reply to courtroom proceedings, investigative proceedings,” Prasad mentioned.
The Central authorities not too long ago withdrew Twitter’s ‘middleman platform’ standing as a consequence of non-compliance with new IT guidelines.