Twitter locks account of India’s largest opposition party

Twitter has locked the account of Indian National Congress, the South Asian nation’s largest opposition party, for violating its rules days after the American social network temporarily suspended profiles of several of the party’s senior leaders.

The Indian National Congress wrote about the Twitter episode on Facebook Thursday. “When our leaders were put in jails, we were not scared then why would we be afraid of closing our Twitter accounts now. We are Congress, this is the message of the people, we will fight, we will keep fighting. If it is a crime to raise our voice to get justice for the rape victim girl, then we will do this crime a hundred times. Jai Hind… Satyamev Jayate,” it said.

The social media head of All Indian Congress Committee, Rohan Gupta, alleged that Twitter had taken the step at the direction of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.

“The Twitter Rules are enforced judiciously and impartially for everyone on our service. We have taken proactive action on several hundred Tweets that posted an image that violated our Rules, and may continue to do so in line with our range of enforcement options. Certain types of private information carry higher risks than others, and our aim is always to protect individuals’ privacy and safety. We strongly encourage everyone on the service to familiarise themselves with the Twitter Rules and report anything they believe is in violation,” a Twitter spokesperson told TechCrunch.

Last week, Twitter suspended the account of Rahul Gandhi, the former president of the Indian National Congress, after he tweeted pictures with the family of a nine-year-old who was allegedly raped and murdered. The company was shortly reached by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, an Indian statutory body, which said the Congress leader’s tweets violated the privacy of a minor victim.

The new episode is Twitter’s latest headache in India. After months-long public discourse with the Indian government, Twitter finally complied with the South Asian nation’s new IT law, which went into effect in May, a lawyer for New Delhi said in a court Tuesday.

This is a developing story. More to follow…

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