NEW DELHI: New Union Electronics and Information Technology (IT) Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Thursday said the ‘law of the land’ was supreme and Twitter will have to fall in line and comply with new social media and intermediary guidelines.
This comes amidst Twitter and Centre engaged in a tug of war over the new IT Rules and the appointment of a chief compliance officer. “Whoever is a citizen of India and those who stay in India will have to abide by the laws of the country,” Vaishnaw said.
This came on a day the Delhi High Court said that there was no interim protection for Twitter and that the Centre was free to take any action if it breached the new IT Rules. Before this, Twitter had informed the Delhi High Court that it will appoint a grievance redressal officer.
Under the new norms, social media companies with over 50 lakh users should appoint a grievance officer to deal with complaints and share the name and contact details of the officers. Big social media companies are required to appoint a chief compliance officer, a nodal contact person and a resident grievance officer. They should be residents of India.
Before Vaishnaw’s appointment, his predecessor Ravi Shankar Prasad was engaged in a war of words on social media. Prasad was locked out of Twitter briefly which he had protested against. The ministry has warned Twitter that non-compliance may lead to ‘unintended consequences’.