Twitter public policy head Colin Crowell may depose before Parliamentary panel

Indian Parliament is the fourth legislature globally after Singapore, European Union and the US Congress to probe into the issue of abuse of political content.

Published: 25th February 2019 01:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th February 2019 01:45 PM   |  A+A-

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Social media company Twitter (Photo | AP)


NEW DELHI: The Parliamentary Standing Committee on IT headed by BJP MP Anurag Thakur as chairman began their sitting on Monday. According to sources the Twitter top executive and Head of Public Policy Colin Crowell is supposed to depose the 31-member panel - which had on February 11 disallowed Twitter executive Director, Policy for South Asia Mahima Kaul to depose before them.

The committee which has BJP members like L K Advani and Paresh Rawal and also the likes of P Karunakaran (CPI-M), Prasun Banerjee (Trinamool), Raj Babbar (Congress) and KG Kenye (NPF) among others had said - "Twitter has sought to insult Indian parliament by deputing a junior executive".

Accordingly, Kaul was not allowed to depose on February 11. The deliberations on Monday, according to the listed agenda of the Committee is to "To hear the views of the representatives of Twitter on the subject Safeguarding citizens rights on social and online news media platforms".

READ| Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey won't appear before Parliamentary panel on February 25

"Twitter will appear before the Parliamentary Committee today 25th Feb," the panel chairman Anurag Thakur, a BJP lawmaker, tweeted in the morning.

The Parliamentary panel on Information Technology after February 11 meet had specifically summoned Twitter head Jack Dorsey to appear before it on Monday (February 25).

"We thank the Parliamentary Committee for its invitation to hear Twitter's views on 'Safeguarding citizen rights on social/online news media platforms'. These are issues for all Internet services globally.  Colin Crowell, Global Vice President of Public Policy for Twitter, will meet with the Committee on Monday," a source had said.

In fact, Indian Parliament is the fourth legislature globally after Singapore, European Union and the US Congress to probe into the issue of abuse of political content and conduct of the popular and globally acclaimed microblogging site.

The Standing Committee on IT will also hear the views of the representatives of Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram on the subject 'Safeguarding citizens rights on social/online news media platforms' on March 6, sources said.

Twitter executives have provoked angry reactions from lawmakers and especially a section of BJP was not happy over the fact that the popular microblogging site has 'reportedly encouraged left-leaning' and anti-government tweets in recent past.

Ventilating his anguish Thakur had tweeted early this month - "The Parliamentary Committee on Information Technology takes very serious note of this. We will take appropriate action on 11th February".

He also invited citizens to send or convey their concerns and issues via email to the 31-member Parliamentary Committee. Another BJP MP and chairperson of Lok Sabha Privilege Committee Meenakshi Lekhai also has said that the micro-blogging site can face 'repercussions' for their conduct.

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