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Twitter India gets grievance redressal officer; no word on appointment of compliance and nodal officers

NEW DELHI: Amidst a stiff confrontation with the government over complying with the new IT guidelines, micro-blogging giant Twitter has appointed an interim grievance redressal officer for its India operations in line with statutory requirements.
However, it’s still not clear whether the company has appointed a compliance officer and a nodal officer which have also been spelt out in the rules that were announced on February 25, and mandated the appointments from May 26.
Dharmendra Chatur, who is reported to be a partner designate at a law firm representing Twitter at the Delhi high court, has been appointed as an interim grievance redressal officer.
The government’s view on this appointment is yet not clear considering it has previously rejected appointment of an outsider on the statutory positions.
A spokesperson for Twitter India declined comment on the remaining appointments.
The reluctance of the company comes even when the government has made it clear that a continued refusal by the company to abide by the new law will attract action. “The law has already kicked in. It will not go indefinitely unpunished. Certainly, patience is not infinite,” IT and law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told TOI on Monday in reaction to the company’s cold response to falling in line with the new rules.
Twitter had on May 27 accused the Indian government of “dangerous overreach that is inconsistent with open, democratic principles”, and said that it has been forced to ‘withhold’ (block in India) portions of “legitimate free speech” on its platform over fears around the safety of its employees and threats of financial penalties.
The government, however, shot back at the company, accusing it of deliberately subverting the law of the land and trying to “dictate” its terms even while using “opaque policies” to “arbitrarily” suspend user accounts and delete tweets.
“… the only instance of scuttling free speech on Twitter is Twitter itself and its opaque policies, as a result of which people’s accounts are suspended and tweets deleted arbitrarily without recourse,” the IT ministry said on the same day, asking the company to “stop beating around the bush and comply with the laws of the land.”



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