Twitter has suspended the @hindutva__watch Twitter account after a demand by Modi government, over a tweet, after it was reported by the Government of India.
The @hindutva__watch Twitter account covers hate crimes, communalism, bigotry, hate speech, human rights in India, and misuse of Hindutva ideology by sharing authentic reports and published research on these issues in India.
@hindutva__watch says all their posts are from mainstream Indian media, from where they get their news.
“Ever since we covered news reports on CAA and NRC protests, Delhi 2020 pogroms, the farmer’s protests, double standards of the government vis-à-vis the Kumbh Mela and the Markaz gatherings over social distancing, hate crimes against the minorities—we have been receiving threats from verified accounts of the BJP IT cell workers and pro-BJP journalists,” the @hindutva_ watch told NRI Affairs.
But never did they anticipate that Twitter would suspend their account, which they did on 22 April 2021. Despite requesting Twitter for an explanation none has been forthcoming.
The @hindutva_watch had a following of 25.7K, which included journalists, NGOs, activists, celebrities, politicians, and academics from all over the world.
“We created another Twitter back-up account @hindutvawatch2, which was suspended for two months, but thankfully has been recovered. But our original account still remains suspended,” says the owners of the account.
@hindutva_maintains that the news reports that they share are already published by mainstream media such as Times of India, The Print etc.
“Twitter is aware that the tweets are news headlines reported ad verbatim with not an extra word added,” it said.
According to the Hindutva_Watch, the tweet which Twitter informed them, was reported by Govt of India.
This is the story which the Hindutva_Watch had shared.
Here is the tweet of The Print India journalist Shanker Arnimesh who had originally reported this story, his original tweet with link to this story, is still up there on his official Twitter account and it faced no action from Twitter or complaint by BJP govt of India.
This is not the first time that the current BJP government has used its political strength to suspend accounts, which are critical itself, the RSS, and the VHP—even if these accounts do not violate laws.
In February this year, the social media platform had taken action on more than 500 accounts and reduced visibility of some hashtags in India to comply with “several” orders from the Indian government after New Delhi threatened legal action against executives with the American social network.
Critics say the Modi government is taking censorship to a new level during the COVID-19 pandemic and misusing it to further tighten its control over media and social media in India.
NRI Affairs News Desk
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