Synopsis: The plea contended that some “promoted handles” were supposedly being used on the Twitter platform to promote an agenda for a separate Khalistan.
In the Delhi High Court, a PIL was moved to take action against the Twitter social media platform for alleged involvement in a conspiracy to spread anti-India propaganda such as the Khalistan movement.
A petition for criminal action against Twitter India and its representative for involvement in a conspiracy to spread the Khalistan Movement has been filed before the Delhi High Court.
An action against Twitter Communications India Pvt Ltd and its officials, Raheel Khurshid and Mahima Kaul, for the execution of offences pursuant to Section 39 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, Sections 107, 121A, 124A, 153A, 153b and Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and Section 66F of the Information Technology Act , 2000, was sought by the petitioner, Sangeeta Sharma.
Respondent No 5 (Twitter Communications India) is responsible for introducing to the general public the Khalistani movement and the anti-national agenda.
The petitioner alleged that the Twitter platform is being used to call on separatists in the absence of a system to control content/news on social media, which is creating fear in certain parts of the society, questioning the unity, dignity and sovereignty of the Union of India.
The petitioner argued that by accepting financial gratification and paid advertisements, Twitter “abetted” the act of the separatists.
The petitioner also submitted that considering the question raised by the Member of Parliament, Anantkumar Hedge, of “anti-national acts” on Twitter, no “significant action” was taken by Twitter.
It is further argued that Twitter India’s management is not neutral and that the platform is “unabashedly and unambiguously against the current government”.
In view of the above, the petitioner has demanded that the National Investigative Agency examine those who are promoting pro-Khalistan Twitter messages.
The Central Government is also seeking a direction to review and monitor social media posts and advertisements.
Today, the matter was referred for a hearing before Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan. However, the Chief Justice ordered that the matter be taken before Justice Hima Kohli’s Divison Bench.
The case will be heard next on the 30th of September.