National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) chairperson Priyank Kanoongo has written to Jammu and Kashmir DGP Dilbag Singh asking him to investigate the complaint received by the statutory body from a Delhi based activist group Kalinga Rights Forum (KRF) against Twitter India, accusing it of allowing Jihadist organisations to use the platform to promote terrorism in India.
Earlier in the day, OpIndia reported that KRF had filed a complaint with NCPCR against Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari and its Public Policy Manager Shagufta Kamran, for “conspiring and promotion of terrorism using Kids against India & allowing terror organisations to use Twitter to facilitate recruitment activities for terrorism in Union Territories of J&K and L showing small kids as the face of terror organisations”.
It was after KRF flagged the issue, the statutory body took cognisance of the case and wrote to the DGP of Jammu and Kashmir: “The commission has received a complaint informing about a post and video posted on Twitter under the Twitter handle @AGH HISTOrY wherein a child is shown to use a gun and is firing bullet in the air. It is seen that there are 4-5 men who are looking at the child and encouraging and appreciating to use the gun. The complaint alleges the video to be showing unlawful terror activity support and promotion of terrorism using children and allowing terror organisations to use Twitter to facilitate recruitment activities for terrorism in UnionTerritories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh”, read the NCPCR letter.
The statutory body furthers that keeping in view the prima facie violation of child rights made out in the video, it deems it appropriate to take cognizance in the matter under Section 13(1)(j) of the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005 and asks J and K police to investigate into the allegations made in the complaint and identify the origin of the video and inform the commission about the same. It says that if found that the video has been shot at a place that falls under the jurisdiction of J and K police, then n FIR under the relevant provisions of the law must be registered and investigation must be undertaken to apprehend these offenders.
In case, the video is originated outside its jurisdiction, then the J and K police should inform about the same to the statutory body, read the letter.
NCPCR slams Twitter for not complying with new IT Rules 2021
Taking strong objection to such posts and videos being circulated online on Twitter, NCPCR wrote that this is a threat to the public interest and the sovereignty of India.
In the letter, NCPCR slammed the microblogging site, saying that this video being widely circulated on Twitter is propagating the use of children for purposes of terrorist activities which is in violation of the provisions of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015. It also opined posting such posts and videos in wide circulation on Twitter is also a matter of concern due to the fact that Twitter’s policy permits children (that is children aged 13 years and above) to use and access Twitter. It said that the commission is apprehensive that such posts would have an adverse impact on children using Twitter and give them access to join such illegal groups on Telegram.
“Therefore, it is important that such posts and videos are not allowed to be posted on Twitter and strict penal action should be taken on Twitter for allowing such posts to be made on its platform”.
Bringing up the issue of the social media giant not complying with the new regulations of the IT Rules 2021, NCPCR wrote that this act was also in violation of the provisions of the law of the land including Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021and Section 79 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.
It said that the Commission has been made aware that Twitter does not acquire intermediary status in India as it has not yet complied with these requirements as per Rules, 2021 and has not appointed any resident grievance officer and chief compliance officer yet.
NCPCR orders action against Twitter India and messaging app- Telegram
Saying so, the statutory body ordered the filing of an FIR, as demanded by the activist group, against Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari and its Public Policy Manager Shagufta Kamran under relevant provisions of law for violating law of the land.
It also asked the authorities to take action against Telegram, which along with Twitter is guilty of providing a platform to the terror organisations to operate against India and carry out recruitment activities by using kids for radicalisation, brainwashing of kids to join terrorism against India.
NCPCR also directed the J&K authorities to identify the terror groups which are promoting terrorist activities on Telegram and take appropriate action against them.
The statutory body concluded the letter by asking authorities to send a report, specifying the actions taken in the matter, to the Commission within 7 days.
OpIndia reports about the complaint filed by activist group with NCPCR against Twitter India
Earlier in the day, OpIndia reported that in its complaint to the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), Kalinga Rights Forum alleged that Twitter India is facilitating terror organisations like Ansar Ghazwat-Ul-Hind supporters to operate against India and carry out recruitment activities by using kids for radicalisation, brainwashing of kids to join terrorism against India by providing them with a platform.
Speaking on how Twitter India is helping terrorist ideologies by providing the terror groups with a platform to spread their messages, recruit members, gather intelligence and also engage with their networks, the Delhi based activist group wrote that Twitter India allows terrorist supporters to post videos which show small children holding AK-47s, shooting in the air while other terrorists closely watch and instruct the kid how to shoot the gun.
The activist group shared the link and the archived link of the Tweet posted by AGH HISTOrY, going by Twitter handle @Rainbow35886147, wherein a small child is being taught how to use an AK-47 by terrorists. The activist group claims that AGH HISTOrY is a supporter of the Islamist terrorist organisation Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind, a Kashmiri wing of Al-Qaeda that is active in the Indian union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
“By allowing such posts on the microblogging site, Twitter India is conspiring against India and abetting and supporting anti-India terrorist organisations to carry out terror attacks against India”, read the complaint.
It added that the terrorist supporter, AGH HISTOrY has brazenly mention links to the Telegram groups in its Twitter posts and asked fellow terrorist supporters to join these groups.
OpIndia had reported that the statutory body had taken cognisance of the complaint and was in the process of drafting a notice, ordering action against Twitter India.