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Parliamentary panel grills Twitter for temporarily locking Amit Shah's account in 2020

Twitter said Shah's account was temporarily locked due to an 'inadvertent error'

PTI01-08-2020_000088A File photo of Home Minister Amit Shah

Members of a parliamentary committee on Thursday raised the issue of Twitter temporarily locking the account of Union Home Minister Amit Shah in 2020 as well as misrepresentation of the Indian map by the micro-blogging site, sources said.

The parliamentary standing committee on Information Technology on Thursday interacted separately with representatives of Facebook, Twitter and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology on the issue of safeguarding citizens' rights, preventing misuse of social news media platforms and women security in the digital space.

During the interaction with Twitter representatives, some members, mostly from the ruling BJP, raised the issue of the platform locking the account of Shah for a short period late last year, sources said after the meeting.

Some BJP members questioned the fact-checking mechanism at Twitter and wondered how the account of country's home minister was locked. 

Twitter had then said that Shah's account was temporarily locked due to an "inadvertent error" and the decision was reversed immediately.

Shah's Twitter display picture was removed by Twitter in response to a "report from the copyright holder".

Committee members also flagged the issue of Twitter misrepresenting the Indian map, a member said.

When some members asked the basis of on which Twitter was removing contents and blocking accounts the company representatives said they want to create a "healthy platform".

But some members were not satisfied and sought details on how decisions were made to block some accounts and leave others, a member said. 

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