Twitter blocks handles, tweets on Kashmir after letter from government

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said these accounts were ‘propagating objectionable content’.

Social media site Twitter has banned many accounts and tweets related to Jammu and Kashmir after it received an official correspondence from the government, The Indian Express reported on Tuesday.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology asked Twitter to remove 115 handles and tweets that were found to be “propagating objectionable content” in a letter dated August 24, 2017. The letter said a committee had decided on August 4 to remove these accounts in “the interest of public order as well as for preventing any cognisable offence in Section 69A of the IT Act”.

This section of the Information Technology Act, 2000, allows the government to block any content it deems objectionable to the country’s security, integrity or sovereignty.

These Twitter handles usually posted on matters related to the Valley, and some of them questioned the Indian government’s stand on the conflict in the state.

WhatsApp used to stoke violence: Report

The National Investigation Agency has identified 117 people who used 79 WhatsApp groups to gather stone-pelters and stoke unrest in Jammu and Kashmir, The Indian Express reported. They used WhatsApp to send instructions, the agency claimed, adding that most administrators of these groups were based in Pakistan.

As many as 6,386 phone numbers were found in these groups, sources have told the English daily. Around 1,000 of these were active in Pakistan and Gulf nations, but the rest were from the Valley and areas surrounding it. The agency has also found that most stone pelters were active in a 30km radius around their homes.

It has prepared a detailed dossier including the pictures of suspects and other details like their social media profiles, phone numbers and locations, which will be used for further action.

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