New Delhi [India]: Parliament’s Standing Committee on Communications and Information Technology, headed by Congress leader Shashi Tharoor will examine the working of the Information Technology Act 2020 on Tuesday.
The officials from the Ministry of Information and Technology are likely to appear before this Committee.
The notice that was sent out to the members of the committee reads, “Briefing by the representatives of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology on the subject ‘Review of functioning of Information Technology Act, 2000.”
Officials from the Ministry who are likely to appear before the committee include the MEITY Secretary among other senior officials.
The committee will be discussing this crucial issue at a time when Twitter has moved court against the government, and it is once again reiterated demands to remove insufficient IT laws and clearance of new IT Rules.
There has been increasing demand for bringing stringent rules to ensure net neutrality, data privacy, and algorithmic accountability of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
As per sources Twitter went to court questioning the arbitrary request by the Ministry for information and technology to remove certain posts from the microblogging site.
“Twitter Inc., being an ‘Intermediary’ as defined under section 2(1)(w) of the Information Technology Act, 2000 is expected to follow the laws of India while operating in India and the repeated violations, and non-compliance of Directions issued by the designated officer appointed under section 69A of the IT Act has necessitated initiating appropriate proceedings under the IT Act, 2000,” the Ministry had said in its notice to the social media giant.
The Indian government in the notice further reiterated that it was essential for Twitter to comply with the intermediary rules.
“MeitY grants Twitter Inc. one last opportunity to comply with all directions issued under section 69A of the IT Act, by 4th July 2022. If Twitter Inc. continues to be in violation of these Directions and therefore the IT Act, significant consequences under the IT Act shall prevail, including loss of immunity as available to you being an intermediary under sub-section (1) of section 79 of the IT Act AND liable to punishment to offences as prescribed in the IT Act 2000,” Indian government’s notice to Twitter Further stated.
“All government policies, laws and rules are focussed on ensuring that every Indian Digital Nagrik always has an open, safe and trusted, accountable internet. These policy objectives and obligation to comply always with Indian law form the boundary conditions for all intermediaries operating in India,” according to government sources.
“Indian Internet and the Digital Nagrik welcome every Global and Indian intermediary/platform to offer their service/product in India but with clear expectations of their conduct to be in compliance with the aforementioned boundary conditions,” the sources further added.
Twitter, an intermediary under the IT act has been repeatedly in violation of directions issued under the IT act and today they were issued a notice after several efforts of seeking compliance.