April 18, 2021

Union Minister RS Prasad to Mark Zuckerberg

File photo of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

File photograph of Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad mentioned there are a number of situations the place Fb has been utilized by radical components “whose sole purpose is to destroy social order”.

Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has written to Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg elevating issues over senior Fb officers “on file abusing Prime Minister and senior cupboard ministers”. He mentioned it’s problematic when these staff are doing this whereas nonetheless working in Fb India and managing necessary positions. The letter got here in the midst of a raging controversy concerning the social media platform being biased in the direction of the ruling BJP, with Prasad making precisely reverse claims.

He spoke about “a concerted effort by Fb within the run up the 2019 basic elections to delete pages or considerably cut back their attain but additionally supply no recourse or proper of enchantment to affected people who find themselves supportive of the proper of centre ideology”, including that dozens of mails written on this regard to the social media big has gone unanswered. Nevertheless, there have been makes an attempt by way of “selective leaks” to painting a distinct actuality, he wrote.

The “interference in India’s political course of by way of gossip, whispers and innuendo is condemnable. This collusion of Fb with the worldwide media is giving free run to malevolent vested pursuits to solid aspersions on the democratic strategy of our nice democracy,” Prasad mentioned.

He mentioned there are “credible media studies” concerning the Fb India’s managing director and different senior officers belonging to a specific perception and that folks from this political disposition has been “overwhelmingly defeated in successive free and honest elections”.

The Union minister mentioned he wish to level out a number of situations the place the social media platform has been utilized by radical components “whose sole purpose is to destroy social order” to recruit individuals and assemble them for violence.

Stating that there’s but to be any significant motion taken in opposition to such components, he requested whether it is being held again by the “identical vested teams who’ve an incentive in stoking violence and political instability in India”.

One other concern raised by Prasad is the outsourcing of fact-checking companies to 3rd events, which he referred to as “shady organisations with no credibility”. He mentioned that “vigilant volunteers” need to often truth examine these teams, including that a whole lot of “misinformation” about COVID-19 and its aftermath have gone unchecked. He mentioned an organisation like Fb with transnational presence and broad consumer base can’t be proof against native sensitivities.

The Congress has been targetting the ruling camp after articles revealed in US media prompt Fb’s bias in the direction of posts belonging to members of the BJP or proper wing teams. Fb officers have been requested to seem earlier than a parliamentary committee, headed by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor over these studies.

Prasad mentioned it appeared “deeply entrenched vested pursuits aren’t glad with the shrinking house of 1 aspect of the spectrum in India and needs to throttle it utterly.”

He mentioned solely an “inner energy wrestle” may “clarify how details are being spun by selective leaks from inside your organization to try to painting an alternate actuality”. He ended his letter with an enchantment that Fb places in place country-specific neighborhood tips that respect the social and non secular range of India.

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