Joint Committee of Parliament on Data Protection Bill chief Meenakshi Lekhi said on Wednesday that social media platform Twitter has apologised to the panel in writing for wrongly showing Ladakh as part of China, PTI reported. Lekhi said that Twitter has also promised to rectify the error by the end of the month.
The social media platform’s affidavit was signed by Damien Karien, chief privacy officer of Twitter, for wrong geo-tagging of India’s map, Lekhi said.
A controversy arose after Twitter had on October 18 shown Jammu and Kashmir as a part of China during a live broadcast by a journalist from Leh, Ladakh. Last week, the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology issued a notice to Twitter, asking for an explanation in five days. The notice, sent to Twitter’s global vice president, had asked why legal action should not be taken against the company and its representatives.
“The legal options before the government include filing an FIR under the criminal laws amendment act leading to imprisonment of upto six months for Twitter executives and the second option is to block access to Twitter in India under Section 66a of the IT Act,” a senior government official had said.
Earlier on October 28, the Lekhi-led panel had also said that the matter amounted to a criminal offence with imprisonment of seven years. The panel had said the social media platform’s explanation was “inadequate” after Twitter submitted that the company is committed to transparency and will stay in touch with the government to share updates. “The recent geotagging issue was swiftly resolved by our teams,” a spokesperson for Twitter had added.
The Centre had also written a stern letter to Twitter Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey, telling him that both Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir were “integral and inalienable” parts of India.
The controversy arose amid border tensions between India and China. Military heads of the two countries have engaged in several rounds of talks over the last three months after 20 Indian and an unknown number of Chinese soldiers were killed in violent clashes in Galwan Valley in Ladakh on June 15. However, these talks have failed to break the impasse.