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Plea in SC seeks to make Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram accountable for hate, fake news

The PIL requested the apex court to ask the central government to establish a mechanism that would automatically remove any forms of hate speech or fake news within a stipulated time frame.

October 30, 2020 / 05:36 PM IST

A petition filed in the Supreme Court seeks direction to make laws that regulate and enforce accountability on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram for spreading hate speech and fake news.

The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by advocate Vineet Jindal through advocate Kishor Choudary earlier this week, asked the Centre for directions to frame criminal prosceutions on those who are involved in spreading fake news or hate via social media channels, ANI reported.

According to the report, the plea comes after two tweets made by a user Armin Navabi addressed a Hindu goddess using derogatory terms.

The PIL requested the apex court to ask the central government to establish a mechanism that would automatically remove any forms of hate speech or fake news within a stipulated time frame. This is in a bid to counteract the spread of misinformation or hate speech on these channels, the report said.

The PIL further asked the government to appoint an investigating officer, someone who is an expert, whenever a fake news or hate speech is reported.

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“India has seen plenty of communal violence in the past, but in today’s time of social media, these aggressions are not just restricted to the regional or local population, the entire country is taken along. The fog of rumours, innuendo, and hate that act as kindling in a local communal clash immediately spread across India through social media,” the plea said.

It also contented that it would be beneficial for India to look at the regulation standards implemented by different countries in order to introduce guidelines. These form a balance between freedom of speech and accountability of social media platforms, the report said.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Oct 30, 2020 05:34 pm

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