Twitter has blocked Canadian-Punjabi singer Jazzy B's account on a request made by the Indian government. This came after his frequent tweets in support of the farmer's protest at the Singhu border. Last year in December, he also visited the national capital to support thousands of farmers protesting against the new farm laws.
According to information on the Lumen database, Twitter received a legal request from the Indian government on June 6 for actioning four accounts, including that of JazzyB. The other three accounts that have been suspended are hip-hop artist L-Fresh the Lion, California Sikh Youth Alliance, and @Tarande61695394.
Requests received by Twitter for withholding content are published on the Lumen database which is an independent research project studying cease and desist letters concerning online content.
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"If the content violates Twitter's Rules, the content will be removed from the service. In all cases, we notify the account holder directly so they're aware that we've received a legal order pertaining to the account," the spokesperson said.
The message on Punjabi rapper's Twitter account now reads, "@jazzyb's account has been withheld in India in response to a legal demand."
Jazzy B also confirmed the report on his official Instagram handle.
Sharing a screenshot of the 'account withheld' page, he wrote, "I will always stand for the rights of my people #kisanmajdooriktazindabad #neverforget1984 #raiseyourvoice."
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In the following Insta post, he added, "Waheguru Ji I don’t fear physical death, but when my conscience dies, that is real death #neverforget1984 #kisanmajdooriktazindabad."
Social media platform Twitter on June 7 seeked more time to comply with the new IT rules of the Indian government.
According to sources, the micro-blogging site has said that it intends to comply with the rules but needs more time due to the pandemic situation in India. "Twitter has written to Meity seeking more time to comply with the IT rules. It has expressed its intent to comply with the rules but has been unable to do so because of the pandemic," a source told PTI.
The response from Twitter comes after the government, last week, issued a strongly-worded final notice to the company regarding its non-compliance with the new rules. When contacted, a Twitter spokesperson said Twitter has been and remains deeply committed to India, and serving the vital public conversation taking place on the service.