Indian police summon Twitter head over controversial video

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State police have summoned Twitter’s top official in India for not stopping the spread of a video which allegedly provoked sectarian discord in the country, officials said Friday.

Police in Ghaziabad city in northern Uttar Pradesh state registered a case on Tuesday after the video showing a group of men beating up an elderly Muslim man was shared by Twitter users who promoted it as violence by Hindu men.

Police said initial investigations showed there was no communal angle; the man was attacked by six people – Hindus and Muslims – who were angry with him for allegedly selling fake good luck charms. However, Twitter did not remove misleading content.

“We issued a legal notice on Thursday asking Twitter India chief (Manish Maheshwari) to report to our police station within seven days and explain their position,” police officer Akhilesh Mishra said.

“According to the notice, some people used their Twitter handles as a tool to spread hatred and enmity in the society and Twitter Communication India and Twitter Inc did not take any action against it. They let the anti-social messages get viral,” senior officer Atul Sonker told dpa.
There was no immediate response by Twitter on the matter.

The development comes days after India’s Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad hit out against the US firm accusing it of not adhering to new regulations for social media sites that require them to appoint compliance officers.

Prasad also hauled Twitter over the incident saying Twitter’s failure to act was “perplexing” and illustrative of its “arbitrariness in fighting fake news.”

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