An Indian court docket has dismissed Twitter’s lawsuit against the federal government that sought to problem New Delhi’s block orders on tweets and accounts.
The Karnataka Excessive Court docket dismissed the high-profile plea, filed final yr, and in addition fined the Elon Musk-owned agency 5 million Indian rupees ($61,000). The court docket noticed that regardless of being issued notices, Twitter didn’t present causes for why it delayed compliance to the amendments to India’s IT rules.
“Your shopper (Twitter) was given notices and your shopper didn’t comply. Punishment for non-compliance is 7 years imprisonment and limitless tremendous. That additionally didn’t deter your shopper,” a single decide bench stated in scathing verdict Friday.
“So you haven’t given any motive why you delayed compliance, greater than a yr of delay… then suddenly you comply and strategy the Court docket. You aren’t a farmer however a billon greenback firm.”
Twitter filed the plea towards the Indian authorities in Karnataka Excessive Court docket in Bengaluru final yr, earlier than the takeover by Musk was full, alleging that New Delhi had abused its energy by ordering it to “arbitrarily and disproportionately” take away a number of tweets from its platform. Some block orders “pertain to political content material that’s posted by official handles of political events,” Twitter added within the lawsuit.
Musk, who seems to have a much cozier relationship with India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, final yr cited Twitter’s litigation towards New Delhi as one of many many causes he wished to get out of the acquisition deal. His legal professionals stated that the lawsuit uncovered dangers to Twitter’s third-largest market.
Twitter had filed the lawsuit following a tough yr and a half in India, a interval throughout which it had been requested to take down tons of of accounts and tweets, lots of which critics argued have been objectionable solely as a result of they denounced the Indian authorities’s insurance policies and Modi.
Twitter partially complied with the requests however sought to combat most of the authorized orders. Beneath the modification to India’s IT guidelines that went into impact in 2021, Twitter had little to no room to individually problem the takedown orders.
Friday’s verdict follows Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey alleging earlier this month that India recurrently issued requests for the social media big to take away sure posts and accounts, typically accompanying these calls for with threats of legal repercussions in cases of noncompliance.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the federal deputy minister for data know-how in India, refuted Dorsey’s claims and alleged that the Twitter co-founder was trying to “brush out that very doubtful interval of Twitter’s historical past.”