Twitter declared that it has launched a lawsuit against the Indian government the latest salvo in an ongoing fight over the country’s aggressive speech laws. The lawsuit comes after twitter was ordered to remove a series of accounts and posts that violate Indian obscenity and defamation laws. Twitter has now removed the posts, but is seeking judicial protection from such orders in the future.
The fight started last May when India issued latest IT rules for online content shortly followed by a police raid on twitter Indian offices. The following July Indian regulators threatened to hold the micro blogging website liable for any future infractions by its users. Broadly twitter has long argued that it complies with local laws regarding obscenity, and seditious speeches are curiously antagonistic.
In the past, the country has used speech laws to stifle environmental concerns or broader discussion of internal political strife. Prominent author, who faced sedition charges for statements about the conflict in Kashmir, described the system as both chaotic and repressive in a 2016 report on the issue. The most frightening thing is that any mad coot can go and lodge a complaint against you. The Twitter legal fight is convoluted by ongoing confusion about Musk attempt to purchase the agency and take it private.
Read More: Twitter will pay $150 million for using people’s security phone numbers to target ads
In June Musk pledged to accentuate free speech values as twitter’s owner, but also said he would obey local laws and hinted at staff cuts that would make it more difficult to efficiently defend the agency position in India. Despite having signed an agreement to acquire the agency Musk himself continues to shed doubt on whether the acquirement will go through rising further doubts about the agency’s future. Broadly twitter has long argued that it complies with local laws concerning obscenity speeches are unusually aggressive.