A Delhi Assembly committee headed by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Raghav Chadha, has issued a fresh notice to Facebook India vice- president and managing director Ajit Mohan, asking him to appear before the committee on September 23 in connection with complaints about the social media giant's alleged deliberate and intentional inaction to contain hateful content in the country
The Facebook managing director did not appear in the last meeting held on September 15 and their attempt to substantiate their non-appearance with flawed reasoning, the committee through its Chairman Raghav Chadha had displayed displeasure on flouting the directions of the notice.
“Any rebuttal or disregard to the subsequent notice shall be deemed as a willful act of breach of privilege and thus shall entail various proceedings initiated against Facebook India,” the committee said in the notice.
Chadha clarified that the notice of appearance issued to Facebook is directly related to the incidents of violence, riots that occurred in Delhi in February 2020, whereas the proceedings in parliament are on the subject “safeguarding citizens’ rights and prevention of misuse of social,
online news media platforms including special emphasis on women security in the digital space.
“It is manifest from a perusal of this notice that the proceedings before the parliament are in no way connected to the role of Facebook in the riots in Delhi. Therefore, the Committee considers this nothing but an untenable excuse by Facebook to defy the summons issued to them for examination on oath,” he added.
“It has been further decided that in the event of subsequent default in complying to the orders of the committee it shall be constrained to proceed against the Facebook India for committing the breach of committee’s privilege which shall follow consequent penal jurisdiction of the house under the relevant laws and rules and regulation,” it said.
“In the most profound terms, it was clarified to the Facebook once again that refusal to appear before the Committee for reasons which are evidently untenable in law and facts, gives the Committee the impression that they are attempting to conceal crucial facts in relation to Facebook’s role in the violence and thus as a note of caution that the Committee advices as well as commands the to ensure their appearance, failing to which will be admitted as an intelligible breach of privilege and shall ensue the lawful and legal adverse actions against Facebook,” it said.