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Social Media Sites Likely to Face Ban In India From May 26?

Popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram among others may face a ban in India from May 26 as they are yet to comply with the new intermediary guidelines for social media platforms.

The Government of India announced new guidelines for social media on February 25, 2021 and the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MEITy) had given a three months deadline to all the social media sites to comply with the new guidelines. 

May 25 was the last date to accept the guideline. While Facebook has shown interest in accepting the new guidelines, other major social media are yet to accept the terms and conditions, which suggests they may face a ban in India from May 26.

Only Koo, an Indian version of Twitter has accepted the new guidelines.

As per the new guidelines social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp would have to appoint chief compliance officer, nodal contact person and a resident grievance officer. The chief compliance officer shall be responsible for ensuring compliance with the act and rules. Nodal contact person will be responsible for 24×7 coordination with law enforcement agencies, while a resident grievance officer shall perform the functions mentioned under Grievance Redressal Mechanism.

The social media sites are asked to publish a monthly compliance report mentioning the details of complaints received and action taken on the complaints.  The social media platforms are also asked to trace the first originator of the messages.

The new guidelines also suggest that social media handles will be required to remove any content flagged by authorities within 36 hours and setting up a robust complaint redressal mechanism with an officer being based in the country.

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