HC seeks details from Facebook, Twitter
The Delhi High Court has sought the responses of the Centre and three social media platforms — Facebook, Google and Twitter — on a petition seeking details of those who uploaded a wrong photograph of the Hathras rape victim.
Justice Prathiba M. Singh issued notice to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and the social media platforms, and asked them to place before the court, in a sealed cover, the basic subscriber information of the person(s) who uploaded videos and photos that wrongly showed another deceased woman as the rape victim.
The direction came on an application moved by the widower of the deceased in his main petition. The petitioner contended that his wife’s photograph was being circulated on various social media platforms and that they wrongly depicted her as the victim of the unfortunate incident of the rape and murder of a young girl at Hathras, Uttar Pradesh last year.
In January, Facebook, Google and Twitter had told the court that they had blocked or taken down all links that incorrectly showed the deceased woman’s photograph as that of the Hathras rape victim.
On the last date of the hearing, Facebook and Google also told the court that they could not on their own search for such links and remove them without a court or government order.
The petitioner’s lawyers told the court that a victim could not be expected to keep on providing the links after they had brought the issue to the notice of the social media platforms.
The court had also earlier said, “A victim cannot go on searching for links and making complaints. There has to be some other solution.”
The petitioner has also contended in his petition that the revelation of the identity of a rape victim is an offence under the Indian Penal Code (IPC), though the image of a wrong person was in circulation in the present matter.
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