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Elon Musk’s X Suspends Some Indian Accounts After Modi’s Order

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Elon Musk's X Suspends Some Indian Accounts After Modi's Order

(CTN News) – In response to government executive orders, Elon Musk’s social media platform X said Thursday it would block certain accounts and posts from India.

The company stated it disagreed with the order, but that failure to comply would result in “significant fines and imprisonment.”

We will withhold these accounts and posts in India alone, but we disagree with these actions and believe that freedom of expression should extend to these posts,” the platform’s Global Government Affairs said without naming these accounts.

There was no specific reason given for the executive order, but a number of local media outlets linked it to the protests being staged by farmers. The country’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has been contacted for further comment.

Farmers under Elon Musk in the northern state of Punjab have been protesting since mid-February in a renewed attempt to get better crop prices promised in 2021.

Since over a week, they have been marching toward New Delhi, but protests stopped on Wednesday after a young protester and others were injured in clashes with police who used tear gas and water cannons to disperse thousands headed towards Delhi.

The Indian government has been at odds with Elon Musk X for years.

Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter, which under Elon Musk was rebranded to X, said the Indian government threatened to terminate the platform if it did not comply with orders to block accounts criticizing previous farmer protests.

Narendra Modi’s government has dismissed the allegations as “lies.” Elon Musk was warned by the Modi government in October that X must comply with the new and upcoming IT regulations.  As a result of the pandemic, X had to remove posts critical of the government for handling the Covid-19 outbreak.

According to Our World in Data, India’s freedom of expression ranked 0.52 in 2022. Pakistan had a 0.66 ranking and Sri Lanka had a 0.67 ranking. In a post, X said it was unable to publish the executive orders due to legal restrictions. However, the company has written an appeal challenging the Indian government to block accounts.

The Elon Musk company said in a post that it provided notice of the actions to impacted users in accordance with its policies. It’s important to make them public, the post said. Without disclosure, decisions are arbitrary and unaccountable.”

The decision sparked anger among Indian residents, who posted messages such as “Shame on you, dictator Modi” and “Freedom of expression cannot mean spreading anarchy.”. 


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Salman Ahmad is a seasoned writer for CTN News, bringing a wealth of experience and expertise to the platform. With a knack for concise yet impactful storytelling, he crafts articles that captivate readers and provide valuable insights. Ahmad's writing style strikes a balance between casual and professional, making complex topics accessible without compromising depth.

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