The X account of independent research project Hindutva Watch was withheld in India on Tuesday in response to a legal demand.

Hindutva Watch, founded by Raqib Hameed Naik, tracks reports of attacks on minorities and marginalised communities by Hindutva groups in India.

X, formerly Twitter, informed the group that the action was taken on account of a legal removal demand from the Indian government. The government order said that the account violated the Information Technology Act, 2000, the social media giant told Hindutva Watch.

Under Section 69A of the Act, the Centre can send content removal requests on the grounds of protecting national integrity and security, and ensuring friendly relations with foreign states, among other reasons.

Naik told Scroll the development was not surprising in view of “the ruling regime’s track record of suppressing critical voices”. He added: “This won’t deter us from our work, and we will continue undeterred.”

Naik, who moved to the United States in 2020, founded the website in April 2021. The social media account of the website posts videos and news snippets about violence against Muslims and other minority groups in the country.

Last year, X also witheld the accounts of United States-based human rights organisations Indian American Muslim Council and Hindus for Human Rights in India in response to legal demands.

The Indian American Muslim Council had said it had been informed by X that it had received “a legal removal demand from the Government of India… that claims the following content violates India’s Information Technology Act, 2000”.

The organisation did not provide details on the content that X referred to.

Hindus for Human Rights said that X offered no explanation for why this demand was made, “nor has it offered any opportunities for an inquiry or an appeal of this suspension”.

Also read:The near-impossible task of restoring a blocked Twitter handle in India