The government has responded to Twitter's request for a formal meeting over its order to take down 1,178 accounts for spreading misinformation around farmers' protests. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology in a post shared on Koo app said that the Secretary IT will hold talks with Twitter's management.
"Upon the request of Twitter seeking a meeting with the Govt., the Secretary IT was to engage with senior management of Twitter. In this light a blog post published prior to this engagement is unusual. Govt. will share its response soon," it said in a post on Koo.
Koo is a new Made in India microblogging site being touted as Twitter's rival. Several ministers and government departments have already created accounts on Koo. It was co-founded by entrepreneurs Aprameya Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidwatka in early 2020.
Earlier on Tuesday, Twitter said it is seeking formal dialogue with the Information Technology Minister after the government ordered it to take down 1,178 accounts with links to Pakistan and Khalistan supporters that were spreading misinformation and provocative content on farmers' protest. Previously, too, the government had ordered Twitter to take down handles and hashtags that suggested a farmer genocide was being planned.
“We continue to be engaged with the Government of India from a position of respect and have reached out to the Honourable Minister, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, for a formal dialogue,” a Twitter spokesperson said.
Meanwhile, Twitter on Wednesday said it has withheld some of the accounts flagged by the Indian government for blocking "within India only", but has not blocked handles of civil society activists, politicians and media as "it would violate their fundamental right to free expression" guaranteed under country's law.