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X is refraining from providing access to accounts and tweets in India in compliance with directives

X, formerly identified as Twitter, said on Wednesday that it is restricting some accounts and messages in India, a decision it stated it opposes, in compliance with executive directives from the Indian government. X said that failure to comply with the executive directives might result in severe consequences for the corporation, such as substantial fines and jail.

X’s Global Government Affairs said that legal constraints prohibit them from releasing the executive orders, but they assert that disclosing them is crucial for transparency. X recommended filing a writ appeal to challenge the Indian government’s banning orders, which are now pending. X has also informed consumers affected by the restrictions.

X warned that not disclosing information might result in a lack of responsibility and decisions being made without a clear reason.

X’s admission comes after New Delhi’s directive to temporarily remove around 177 accounts and postings related to farmers’ demonstrations in the nation. This year, officials preemptively restricted some social media accounts in anticipation of demonstrations by farmers advocating for an increase in the minimum support price of their crop.

India is a significant market for international technology companies. The revised IT regulations in the South Asian market give New Delhi more authority to ensure adherence from internet businesses operating in the nation.

Apar Gupta, a privacy advocate, noted in a recent post on X:

Preemptive blocking orders have been issued for Twitter accounts belonging to agricultural leaders. This kind of pre-censorship lacks transparency and due process.

Twitter, being under new ownership, will no longer provide the URLs to the Lumen Database, reducing openness. The Karnataka High Court case, which used theocratic argument instead of constitutional reasoning, was lost. I wrote about this topic independently, but that is an additional point.

The government will not reveal or accept responsibility. Why preemptively ban whole accounts? Is the account inherently illegal? Today, fewer individuals will ask these questions compared to two years ago, thus it is not worth asking them. As it grows more threatening in its pursuit of complete control, it demands more degrees of societal conformity. Through discipline, depression, or brainwashing. While the lack of surprise is notable, the distressing aspect lies in the malicious remarks directed against farmers on social media. How easily we forget the approximately 750 demonstrators who died? Has society really lost all decorum in handling disagreements?

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