New Delhi: In what is being seen as a snub to the Government, the CEO of Twitter and its other top officials have declined to appear before the Parliamentary Committee on IT. They had been summoned over the issue of safeguarding citizens’ rights on social media, reports said on Saturday. (Also read: BSP Chief Mayawati Debuts on Twitter)
The reason that was cited was “short notice”, said reports.
The committee, headed by BJP MP Anurag Thakur, had issued a summon to Twitter on February 1. Reports also say that the panel was supposed to meet on February 7 but it postponed the meeting to February 11 to allow the Twitter team time.
The February 1 letter said, “It may be noted that the Head of the Organisation has to appear before the Committee”. It said that “He/She may be accompanied by another representative.”
On February 7, the panel got a note from the Twitter global lead for legal, policy, trust and safety, Vijay Gadde, saying, “No one who engages publicly for Twitter India makes enforcement decisions with respect to our rules for content or accounts in India.”
The development comes at a time when there have been concerns about citizens’ data and its safety during elections.
Twitter’s conduct is also being watched globally and their response is being seen with concern as India’s Parliamentary hearing is among the fourth in the world after the US Congress, Singapore and EU hearing, said reports.
Meanwhile, Union Minister Piyush Goel reacted to the development and said, “Chairman of the Rajya Sabha and Speaker of Lok Sabha will decide on what will be the action in such cases when somebody refuses to submit before the Parliamentary Committee. The Government doesn’t take decisions on it.”