On Friday, BJP MP from Sultanpur and an animal activist, Maneka Gandhi, took to Twitter to slam the Head of TikTok for refusing to delete videos depicting animal cruelty and handing over details of such video creators to the concerned authorities.
Slamming the Chinese video sharing social media service for asking her NGO to appeal to people against posting such violent content, Maneka Gandhi wrote, “We as an NGO will certainly not take part in this message on TikTok since you have no intention of following Government of India orders.”
She had asked the Head of TikTok India to penalise people involved in sharing videos of ‘gratuitous violence’, besides suspending their accounts permanently. Gandhi had also directed him to reveal the names and addresses of such users to the law enforcement authorities so that appropriate action can be taken against them.
My response to the head of TikTok India after he simply refused to take down accounts of users who have been posting graphic videos of violence towards animals or share their details so they could be handed to the authorities. We were just asked to “appeal” to users to not do so. pic.twitter.com/BbXyfdPykL— Maneka Sanjay Gandhi (@Manekagandhibjp) May 22, 2020
Citing examples of two disturbing videos featuring animal abuse that were not removed by TikTok, she wrote, “You need to have more respect for the laws of the country you work in and for your own guidelines. I am not interested in your sanctimonious lies.” Maneka Gandhi was taken aback when the Head of the company overlooking the app’s Indian operations suggested her to appeal to people to refrain from doing so instead of taking action against such miscreants.
Gandhi said that in the past 3 months, she had received over 100 videos depicting animal cruelty but TikTok failed to remove the contentious videos, contrary to their company policies. She also accused the Chinese app of increasing its users at the expense of violence against women, children, and animals, besides spreading fake news. “Are you working for India or China? This is not acceptable. I want a much better and firmer commitment immediately and I need to see it in action,” Maneka Gandhi concluded.
Maneka Gandhi also lashed out at TikTok giving her the usual trope about their community guidelines being strict and how they are formed to keep their users safe. She said that she was not interested in their sanctimonious lies and expected concrete action in tune with the laws of India.
Videos depicting Animal Abuse on TikTok
In a disturbing video uploaded by a user named Gajendra Rathor, two children can be seen lifting a dog on all fours before dumping it in a pond. The poor animal has its mouth, and limbs tied in ropes, making it impossible for it to swim or escape. The duo then mercilessly pelts stone at the animal. The video creator can be heard laughing in the background while saying, “The dog has lived for 4 years. It is now time to bid it goodbye.”
In another instance of horrific animal abuse, a video creator (@thangaraj2317) can be seen tying a cat by its neck to the roof of the house. Twitter user Sunny Mehra who pointed out the disturbing content questioned TikTok over its inaction against animal abuse, vulgarity, child abuse, besides other toxic things.