In a fierce response to Twitter over its statement raising concern over 'potential threat to freedom of expression' in India, the Centre on Thursday asked the micro-blogging platform to 'stop beating around the bush and comply with the laws of the land'.
"Twitter needs to stop beating around the bush and comply with laws of the land. Law making and policy formulations is sole prerogative of the sovereign and Twitter is just a social media platform and it has no locus in dictating what should India’s legal policy framework should be," the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said in a statement.
"Twitter's statement is an attempt to dictate its terms to the world's largest democracy. Through its actions and deliberate defiance, Twitter seeks to undermine India's legal system," the ministry went on to add in the searing statement.
The ministry said that the government assures that representatives of social media companies including Twitter are and will always remain safe in India and there is no threat to their personal safety and security. "Govt condemns Twitter's statement as baseless, false and an attempt to defame India to hide their follies," it added.
Delhi Police slams 'mendacious' statement by Twitter
Earlier in the day, the Delhi Police said the statements by Twitter on the ongoing enquiry in the 'toolkit' case was mendacious and designed to impede the lawful enquiry.
The strongly-worded statement by the Delhi Police came after Twitter on Thursday called the visit by Delhi Police to its offices a form of "intimidation" and said it was concerned about its employees and the potential threat to freedom of expression.
An official statement issued by Delhi Police PRO Chinmoy Biswal said, "Prima facie, these statements are not only mendacious but designed to impede a lawful inquiry by a private enterprise. Twitter Inc. has taken upon itself, in the garb of terms of service, to adjudicate the truth or otherwise of documents in public space."
(With inputs from agencies)