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"We Disagree...": Elon Musk's X Claims Centre Orders To Withhold Accounts

New Delhi: The Centre has issued orders requiring microblogging site X to act against some accounts and posts, the Elon Musk-led organisation has said, stressing that it disagrees with these actions and that the posts should not be withheld on grounds of freedom of expression.

The global government affairs team of X, formerly Twitter, said they are unable to publish the Centre's executive orders due to legal restrictions, but "believe that making them public is essential for transparency". The Centre is yet to respond to the allegations that were made in a post on X past midnight.

"The Indian government has issued executive orders requiring X to act on specific accounts and posts, subject to potential penalties including significant fines and imprisonment," the post read.

"In compliance with the orders, we will withhold these accounts and posts in India alone; however, we disagree with these actions and maintain that freedom of expression should extend to these posts," it added.

"Consistent with our position, a writ appeal challenging the Indian government's blocking orders remains pending. We have also provided the impacted users with notice of these actions in accordance with our policies. Due to legal restrictions, we are unable to publish the executive orders, but we believe that making them public is essential for transparency. This lack of disclosure can lead to a lack of accountability and arbitrary decision-making," the post stated.

The microblogging site's big charge is set to turn into the latest flashpoint in its run-ins with the government over the past few years. Back in 2021, the popular social media platform, then called Twitter and led by a different leadership, had objected to the Centre's guidelines and expressed concern about the "potential threat to freedom of expression". The government had then asked the platform to "stop beating around the bush and comply with the laws of the land" instead of "dictating terms" to the world's largest democracy.

Interestingly, this comes shortly after a Norwegian MP nominated Musk for the Nobel Peace Prize for being a "stout proponent of free speech". Musk's record of pushing free speech on X has also been chequered. Following the takeover of the microblogging site, many have flagged a rise in hate speech against specific sections. Musk has, stressed that free speech, according to him, is that "which matches the law". "I am against censorship that goes far beyond the law. If people want less free speech, they will ask government to pass laws to that effect," he had said shortly after taking over Twitter. 


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