SC Declines PIL Seeking Restrain on Inflammatory Hashtags on Twitter

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Supreme Court of India

NEW DELHI — The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to entertain a petition seeking direction to stop illegal trending of various hashtags on Twitter, attaching religion to the COVID-19 pandemic and said it was akin to asking MTNL to stop people talking wrong things on phone.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde said: “How can the court stop this? You are saying people are saying wrong things on Twitter.”

A petition was filed by advocate Khaja Aijazuddin seeking directions from the apex court to government to direct Twitter to stop the illegal trending of hashtags on the social network under the name #Islamiccoronavirusjihad, #Coronajihad, #Tablighi jamat, #Nizamuddinidiots, #TablighiJamatVirus.

The petitioner argued that these messages were attaching the religion to pandemic disease, and this was unwarranted, illegal and unconstitutional.

The bench replied that it is like people are saying the wrong thing on the phone, therefore ask MTNL to stop them. The court observed that we can’t issue such pre-emptive directions.

The petitioner argued that such messages are also contrary to the guidelines or advisory issued on March 18 by the World Health Organization (WHO), which says religion cannot be attached with the pandemic. “And also it amounts to contrary to the laws prevailing in the territorial Jurisdiction of India i.e. invocation of Penal Laws for want of manifestly insulting the religion by hurting the feelings of the religion and also the trending may disturb the communal harmony of the Country”, said the petition.

The petitioner argued that the trending on Twitter attacking a particular community by attaching the disease is totally contrary to Indian Laws. The top court asked the petitioner to move the High Court concerned on this matter.

— IANS

2 COMMENTS

  1. SHOCKING : Those who were uptil now saying that democracy is in danger and people do not have “Azadi” to air their views are seeking orders to throttle the airing of views. They do not find anything wrong in the anti-national statement given by Dr. Jafar Ul Islam Khan whereby he has threatened Hindus that if Muslims make complaints to Arab, avalanche would follow. He has openly supported Zakir Naik who is Most Wanted. What the police is doing. All links of this Dr. Jafar should be enlisted and investigated for any hidden activity against the security of the country.

  2. What a shame…BJP and RSS has infused pure hatered in the hearts of common man. These people r so blinded that they cannot even see how bad the economy of the country is doing. How the migrant workers are dying of hunger.

    Allah is watching, one day they will get what they deserve. May Allah help our Brothers and Sisters in India to pass through this difficult time.

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