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Over 500 Accounts Suspended By Twitter For Breach Of Policy After Centre’s ‘Legal Requests’

Mumbai: In response to the central government’s “legal requests”, Twitter on Wednesday reported that it had taken several enforcement actions – including a permanent suspension of more than 500 accounts for apparent violations of Twitter rules.

The social media giant said in a statement, “Twitter has been served with several separate blocking orders by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), the government, for our enforcement under the rules of Twitter during the last 10 days. Under section 69A of the Information Technology Act of India.”

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“We took a number of actions, including permanent suspension in some cases – including action against more than 500 accounts in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology for violations of Twitter rules,” the statement said.

The company reported that it took steps to reduce the visibility of hashtags containing harmful content to prevent trending on Twitter.

It said, “Following the news of violence in recent weeks, we are sharing a grainy update on proactive efforts to enforce our rules and protect our principles in India.”

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It further stated that they only separately withhold a portion of the accounts identified in the blocking orders under our “Country Withheld Content” policy within India.

“These accounts are also available outside India. Because we do not believe that the actions we are directed to perform are consistent with Indian law, and, in keeping with our principles of defending protected speech and freedom of expression, we have not taken any action on accounts that consist of news media entities, journalists, activists, and politicians,” the statement added.

The statement comes amid a ‘toolkit’ controversy amid ongoing farmers’ protests. Sources said that the central government on Monday had directed the microblogging platform Twitter to remove 1,178 Pakistani Khalistani accounts spreading misinformation and inflammatory material on the farmer movement.

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