At a time when it is in the thick of the storm around its reluctance to follow India's new IT rules, Twitter was embroiled in a fresh controversy and embarrassment on Friday after IT and law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad revealed that his account was blocked for nearly an hour over alleged violation of an American copyright law due to one of his tweets.
The minister linked the action by the global micro-blogging giant to his tough stand against the company over non-compliance with the new rules. "Twitter's actions indicate that they are not the harbinger of free speech that they claim to be but are only interested in running their own agenda, with the threat that if you do not tow the line they draw, they will arbitrarily remove you from their platform," Prasad said in a series of Tweets.
It later emerged, through the Lumen database of Harvard University, that Prasad's tweet that resulted in the action was from December 2017. He had tagged music composer AR Rehman's 'Maa Tujhe Salaam' video, while writing about India's 1971 victory over Pakistan. The video, according to Twitter, violated copyright laws after there was a complaint to this effect.