The district administration of Kishtwar, Jammu and Kashmir, has asked administrators of WhatsApp groups to get themselves registered within 10 days, PTI reported. The administrators will need to sign an undertaking, accepting responsibility for posts on their groups.
Admins of WhatsApp groups must provide details of all group members, and show up before authorities whenever they need details on information shared on the group, according to The Indian Express. They must also report to the police any post on their groups that can lead to trouble.
The order was issued after a report by Senior Superintendent of Police Abrar Choudhary, which said that WhatsApp groups were “circulating rumours, false information and unconfirmed or baked information”.
“While the freedom of expression through social media is important, the same comes with a responsibility and reasonable restrictions,” the order by District Magistrate Angrez Singh Rana said. “Therefore, social media group administrators with the ownership of the groups should be ready to bear this responsibility.”
Those who do not get their groups registered in 10 days may face action under the Information Technology Act, Ranbir Penal Code, the cyber crime law or the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.