Last month, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) had told the court that Twitter has appointed CCO, RGO, and Nodal Contact Person in compliance with the new IT Rules.
The sub-clauses -- (1) and (3) of Rule 9, which were stayed today, stipulated the adherence to the Code of Ethics. They were inserted to the original IT Rules in February this year.
The counters were filed in response to a batch of PIL pleas from musician TM Krishna, the Digital News Publishers Association & another individual, challenging the constitutional validity of the rules
The Information Technology Rules, 2021, which were notified in February, impose several obligations on online entities including an obligation to take down contentious content quicker.
The US-based company has made these disclosures as part of compliance with India's IT rules that came into force on May 26.
The pleas have challenged the new rules on the grounds that they violate the right to privacy and are unconstitutional.
The order came on petitions which challenged several provisions of the new IT Rules claiming that they were vague and likely to have a "chilling effect" on a citizen's right to free speech.
Bombay HC gives interim stay to part of IT Rules which mandate code of ethics for digital publishers
Compulsory adherence to code of ethics was in breach of the petitioners' right to free speech guaranteed under Art 19 of the Constitution, Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni said.
The First Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice P D Audikesavalu which granted time to the central government to file its counter, posted the matter for hearing after 15 days.
On July 28, the court had expressed displeasure over Twitter appointing a contingent worker as CCO and said that the social media platform was in non-compliance with the new IT Rules.
The court, however, said the affidavit filed by the microblogging platform in this regard is not on record and asked Twitter to ensure that it is brought on record.
The new IT rules require large digital platforms - with over 5 million users - to publish monthly compliance reports, mentioning the details of complaints received and action taken thereon.
The court listed the matter for August 27 after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, said he was in some difficulty and urged the court to adjourn the hearing.
Under the new IT rules, large digital platforms with over 5 million users will have to publish compliance reports every month, mentioning the details of complaints received and action taken thereon.
Twitter had told HC that the same person, Vinay Prakash, has been appointed to “two posts” and that it has been using the term “interim” because the appointees are not employees but contingent workers