LUCKNOW/BHOPAL: Cases have been lodged against senior officials of Twitter India in BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh for putting up an incorrect map of India on the social media major’s website.
While the first case was registered late on Monday night against Twitter India Managing Director Manish Maheshwari and its news partnership head Amrita Tripathi at Khurja Kotwali in West UP’s Bulandshahr district, the second case was registered against Maheshwari and aides at the MP State Police’s Cyber Cell headquarters in Bhopal on Tuesday evening.
In UP, the case was registered against Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari and its news partnership head Amrita Tripathi on the complaint of a local Bajrang Dal leader Praveen Bhati.
The two Twitter India senior officials were booked under Section 505(2) IPC (statements conducing to public mischief) and Section 74 of the Information Technology (Amendments) Act 2008 which deals with publication for fraudulent purpose, a senior Bulandshahr district police officer confirmed to The New Indian Express on Tuesday.
There was an uproar after a world map showing J&K and Ladakh detached from India emerged on the Career section of the social media major’s website on Monday. Twitter had later removed the concerned map from its website following the controversy.
“The map doesn’t show J&K and Ladakh as part of India, which isn’t coincidental, but has been deliberately done to hurt the sentiments of all Indians, including me,” the complainant Bajrang Dal West UP convener Praveen Bhati alleged in the complaint.
This the second case registered by the UP Police against the Twitter India top brass within a month in West UP.
Earlier, on June 15, an FIR was registered by the Ghaziabad Police against micro-blogging site Twitter and seven others, including three journalists Muhmad Zubair, Rana Ayyub and Saba Naqvi and a leading news portal, for posting over social media "unverified facts" about the recent thrashing of an elderly man in the West UP district's Loni Road area.
Around 20 hours after an FIR was lodged against the two senior officials of Twitter India in the West UP district, the MP State Police Cyber Cell headquarters in Bhopal too lodged an FIR against Maheshwari and his aides under Section 505(2) of the IPC on the complaint of social activist and BJP leader Durgesh Keswani.
However, the MP State Police Cyber Cell didn’t invoke Section 74 of the IT Act against Maheshwari. “Right now the IT Act sections don’t apply in the matter, but if during the course of investigations it’s found that the alleged crime invites IT Act sections also, its provisions will be suitably added,” a state Police Cyber Cell cop said.
The action by the MP police came just a few hours after the state’s home minister Narottam Mishra said that the state government has decided to initiate legal action against Twitter for putting up a distorted map of India and other such activities.
"Something or other has been going on continuously against the country for a long time. Sometimes unrestrained words are spoken against Bharat Mata and sometimes a wrong map of the country is displayed on Twitter. These issues cannot be taken lightly. The governments at the Centre and the state have taken it seriously," Mishra said in a statement posted on Twitter.
In another tweet, Mishra said he has directed the state's Director General of Police (DGP) Vivek Johri to investigate the matter and take legal action in this direction.