India is using the Koo app to respond to Twitter
India is using the Koo app to respond to Twitter

Twitter clashed with India on Wednesday, saying the government ordering the deletion of certain accounts was against Indian law while politicians urged their supporters to turn to their local rival, Koo

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government ordered the deletion of more than 1,100 Twitter accounts and said it was distributing information about large-scale protests by farmers against the new agricultural laws.

Twitter said in a message posted on Wednesday that Twitter had not fully complied with certain requirements because it believed it was against Indian law.

The statement said: In line with our principle of defending freedom of expression, we have not taken any action against accounts made up of media companies, journalists, activists and politicians.

The move puts the company and its executives at the center of a political storm as the government threatens to take legal action and may penalize or imprison Twitter officials responsible for implementing government mandates.

Public opinion is divided into one of Twitter's main markets. Some lawyers said Twitter should follow the case or challenge it in court, while activists accused the government of enforcing laws that restrict freedom of expression.

India's IT department said it was unusual for Twitter to publish a blog publicly ahead of a meeting between company executives and its CEO scheduled for Wednesday, adding that it would respond later.

The IT department for the first time released a statement on Koo, stating that Twitter is increasingly dissatisfied with only 41,000 followers, or fewer than one-tenth of Twitter followers.

After the government's decision, Twitter permanently blocked more than 500 accounts, saying: These accounts are involved in tampering with the platform and restricting access to many other accounts only in India.

In a country of 1.3 billion people, the stake in Twitter seems high as the platform has millions of Indian users and Modi, his ministers and other leaders use it to communicate with the audience.

With the controversy over Twitter, many Indian politicians and users have joined the Twitter-like social media platform Koo launched last year.

The hashtag #kooapp was the most popular hashtag on Twitter in India on Wednesday with nearly 21,000 posts, followed by #BanTwitter.

Some people including Commerce Minister (Piyush Goyal) tweeted this week saying I am on Koo now.

Goyal has 9.6 million followers on Twitter and he posted a powerful tweet asking people to contact him on the Indian platform.

State spokesperson (Sampit Batra) and chief media officer (Amit Malviya) of Modi's ruling party also arrived in Ko on Wednesday.

On Koo with the yellow bird logo, downloads have increased tenfold in the past two days, reaching over 3 million.

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