After being put under the pump by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) for the dissemination of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) on its platform, Twitter’s troubles have just increased manifolds. Reportedly, on Wednesday (June 29), Delhi Police Cyber Cell registered a case against the California-headquartered company for the presence of child pornographic content on its platform, based on a complaint filed by the statutory body.
Delhi Police Cyber Cell files a case against Twitter for child pornographic content on their platform. The case has been registered on a complaint by NCPCR (National Commission For Protection of Child Rights).
— ANI (@ANI) June 29, 2021
The case has been registered under provisions of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and the IT Act. In the complaint filed by NCPCR, the case where propaganda outlet Alt News’ co-founder Mohammad Zubair was found stalking a minor girl has been mentioned as well.
However, as usual, the California-headquartered company came up with its usual blabber and tooted its own horn that it had been doing the needful. “We have been at the forefront of responding to the evolving challenge of preventing the exploitation of children on the Internet and will continue to aggressively fight online child sexual abuse, as well as invest in the technology and tools that are essential to stay ahead of this issue,” said a spokesperson.
As reported by TFI, the company had lied to NCPCR when asked about its mechanism for dealing with child pornography and other matters concerning child welfare on social media.
When NCPCR approached Twitter India and told it to report cases of child pornography and other offences to the police, as directed under the POSCO act — the Indian arm of the social media platform purposefully lied that such matters fell under the ambit of Twitter Inc, based in California, United States.
However, upon digging around, the Child rights body found that the company was lying with a plain face. The NCPCR chief remarked that Twitter Communications India has issued 10,000 shares, out of which 9,999 are owned by Twitter Inc.
The commission also found that two of the three directors on the board of Twitter Communications India were employees of Twitter Inc. Thus, making it clear as day that Twitter India was indeed related to Twitter Inc. Consequently, the commission asked Delhi Police to book Twitter Communications India Private Limited under section 199 of the Indian Penal Code.
Furthermore, the NCPCR wrote a letter to the IT Ministry requesting that children’s access to the social media platform be restricted for seven days until the social media platform is judged safe for children and begins to follow India’s IT standards.
Also reported by TFI, such has been the shady work environment in Twitter that the company formed an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) as required under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013, six years after its inception in the country.
With Twitter going back and forth on accepting the new IT laws, citing freedom of speech and expression as the core issue, the government has found chinks in Twitter’s armour. Already facing an FIR for showing a distorted map of India, Twitter has been pushed on the backfoot, courtesy of the new FIR.