Twitter Interim Grievance Officer for India Quits Amid Row With Centre on IT Rules

Twitter’s interim resident grievance officer for India has stepped down, leaving the micro-blogging site without a grievance official as mandated by the new IT rules to address complaints from Indian subscribers, according to a source.

The source said that Dharmendra Chatur, who was recently appointed as interim resident grievance officer for India by Twitter, has quit from the post. The social media company’s website no longer displays his name, as required under Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021. Twitter declined to comment on the development.

The development comes at a time when the micro-blogging platform has been engaged in a tussle with the Indian government over the new social media rules. The government has slammed Twitter for deliberate defiance and failure to comply with the country’s new IT rules. The new rules which came into effect from May 25 mandate social media companies to establish a grievance redressal mechanism for resolving complaints from the users or victims. All significant social media companies, with over 50 lakh user base shall appoint a grievance officer to deal with such complaints and share the name and contact details of such officers.

The big social media companies are mandated to appoint a chief compliance officer, a Nodal Contact Person and a resident grievance officer. All of them should be resident in India. Twitter in response to the final notice issued by the government on June 5 had said that it intends to comply with the new IT rules and will share details of the chief compliance officer. In the meantime, the microblogging platform had appointed Chatur as interim resident grievance officer for India. Twitter now displays the company’s name in the place of grievance officer for India with a US address and an email ID.

According to a government official, the company has lost legal protection as an intermediary and will be legally held responsible for all content posted by its users on the platform.

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