Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien this morning sharply criticised Twitter after the Congress said the social media giant had locked it’s official account and many other accounts of its party leaders. The action came just days after former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi’s account was locked after he posted a photo with the family of a nine-year-old girl allegedly raped and killed in Delhi.
“What’s going on @Twitter @TwitterIndia @jack What’s going on? We strongly condemn the blocking of the accounts of @INCIndia and senior leaders of the Congress party (sic),” Derek O’Brien tweeted. The 60-year-old leader’s tweet came shortly after the Congress attacked the central government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a post on Instagram.
We strongly condemn the blocking of the accounts of @INCIndia and senior leaders of the Congress party.
— Derek O’Brien | ডেরেক ও’ব্রায়েন (@derekobrienmp) August 12, 2021
“Modi ji, just how afraid are you? Reminder: The Congress party fought for our nation’s independence, equipped only with truth, non-violence and the will of the people. We won then, we’ll win again (sic),” the post read.
In a statement, Twitter said: “The Twitter rules are enforced judiciously and impartially for everyone on our service. We have taken proactive action on several hundred Tweets that posted an image that violated our rules, and may continue to do so in line with our range of enforcement options. Certain types of private information carry higher risks than others, and our aim is always to protect individuals’ privacy and safety. We strongly encourage everyone on the service to familiarise themselves with the Twitter Rules and report anything they believe is in violation.”
On Wednesday, Twitter informed the Delhi High Court: “Rahul Gandhi’s tweet violated our policy also, we have already removed that tweet and his Twitter account is also been locked.”
The NCPCR, or National Commission for Protection of Children’s Rights, had last week issued a notice to Twitter India for violating rules and posting a photo by revealing the identity of the Dalit girl whose alleged rape and murder triggered widespread protests.
“They have already locked more than 5,000 accounts of our leaders and other workers across India,” the Congress’s Social Media Head Rohan Gupta was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The Congress’s Shashi Tharoor, who heads the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, this morning said: “I am actively engaged with Twitter about the suspending of accounts from the Congress. I have taken a firm stand on this and I’m actively engaged with them to restore the account.”
The 65-year-old MP also attacked the BJP. “It’s a sad reflection the way the BJP is trying to undermine the opposition and even in the IT committee. Despite our own problems in the committee we still believe only a Supreme Court-monitored probe in Pegasus issue is a solution not the the parliamentary committee. No one from another party can tell us about our internal issues and getting rid of the clutches of the family.”
The opposition has lately united over several issues. Today, a protest was led by Rahul Gandhi outside the parliament after the monsoon session ended two days before the schedule.