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Twitter apologises to parliamentary panel for showing wrong Indian map, promises to rectify the error by Nov 30

Parliamentary panel's chairperson and BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi has said that the committee has received a written apology from Twitter and the company has promised to rectify the geo-tagging issue by November 30.

As per the reports, Twitter has officially apologized for the geo-tagging mistake committed by the social media giant by showing Ladakh as part of China. As per a PTI report, the Parliamentary panel’s chairperson and BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi said that the committee had received a written apology from Twitter and the company has promised to rectify the geo-tagging issue by November 30. The deposition from Twitter has come in the form of an affidavit signed by Twitter Inc’s Chief Privacy Officer, Damien Karein.

Notice issued for showing Ladakh as part of China

In October, the Joint Committee of Parliament on Data Protection Bill had sent a notice to Twitter for showing Ladakh as part of China. It mentioned in the notice that the act amounted to treason and had sought an explanation in the form of an affidavit.

Twitter India’s representatives had met Lekhi and begged apology. However, their request was denied as the act was a criminal offence that “questioned the sovereignty of the country”. The committee asked Twitter India to inform Twitter Inc, the parent company, to submit an affidavit explaining their stand as an answer from its ‘marketing arm’, Twitter India, was not acceptable.

Lekhi said, “Twitter has now given us a written apology on an affidavit for Ladakh being shown in China.” She further added that they have apologised for hurting the sentiments of the Indians and promised to correct the error by November 30.

Twitter had shown Ladakh as “Jammu & Kashmir, the People”s Republic of China”

In October, while doing a Twitter Live session, security expert Nitin A Gokhale had noticed that his location was geo-tagged as ‘Jammu & Kashmir, the People”s Republic of China’. He was standing at Leh’s Hall of Fame, a war memorial for fallen soldiers in the Union Territory of Ladakh at that time. Taking cognizance of the issue, the Indian government issued a notice to Twitter on October 22 warning them to rectify the wrong geo-tagging.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology had sent a letter and asked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to respect the country’s sensitivities. Twitter had called it a ‘technical issue’ that had been resolved. In the affidavit submitted to the committee, Twitter said that the error was caused due to a software error combined with imperfect data resulting in an incorrect geo-tag.

“In the last few weeks, we have worked towards resolving the geo-tag issue in a manner wherein Leh as well as other cities in the Union Territory of Ladakh will now accurately show with their respective city name, state and country. In addition to this, we are also reviewing the geo-tag for various other cities in Jammu and Kashmir. This work is already in progress, and we are targeting November 30, 2020, completing this exercise,” it further added.

Twitter said that its team in India would continue to engage with the government for follow-up discussions. “We would also like to apologise for any sentiments that were hurt because of this error, “it said.

Twitter India’s representatives were questioned for two hours

On October 28, Twitter India’s representatives were questioned by the Parliamentary panel members over several issues with Ladakh geo-tagging as the priority. After the meeting, Lekhi said, “The committee was of the unanimous opinion that Twitter’s explanation on showing Ladakh as part of China was inadequate.”

 

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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