Twitter India chief, other official booked over distorted Indian map

New Delhi: Less than a day after drawing flak over displaying a distorted map of India that showed Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh as separate countries, the microblogging site is now in a legal soup with Uttar Pradesh’s Bulandshahr district lodging an FIR against two senior officials of Twitter India.

On Monday evening, FIR lodged at the Khurja Nagar police station named Twitter India chief Manish Maheshwari and News Partnerships Head Amrita Tripathi as accused. They have been booked under Indian Penal Code section 505 (2) (public mischief).

The FIR was lodged following a complaint by a Bajrang Dal office bearer, reports said.

The glaring distortion, which appeared on the career section of the Twitter website under the header ‘Tweep Life’, had triggered a heavy backlash from netizens on Monday as they demanded strict action against the microblogging platform flouted various rules on multiple occasions in the past.

#TwitterBan was trending on Twitter on Monday evening. Besides, this is not the first time that Twitter has misrepresented India’s map. Earlier, it had shown Leh as part of China.

The global map, which grossly misrepresented India’s boundaries, was removed on late Monday evening by Twitter following social media outrage.

Sources said the government is seriously looking into the matter. In this case, since the wrong depiction is on Twitter’s website, the case is not that of an ‘intermediary’ but of a publisher which is responsible for content.

This controversy comes amid the US digital giant being at loggerheads with the Indian government over the new social media rules. The government has confronted Twitter over its deliberate defiance and failure to comply with the country’s new IT rules, despite repeated reminders.

Notably, the microblogging platform has lost its legal shield as an intermediary in India, becoming liable for users posting any unlawful content.

With agency inputs