Explained: What is the India angle in the Twitter vs Musk legal slugfest?

Twitter’s high-stakes legal battle against some of the Indian government’s content-blocking orders has come under the spotlight in another high-profile court case — that of the company’s lawsuit against Tesla CEO Elon Musk over his retraction of his $44 billion bid to buy the company. Musk accused Twitter of Hides her claim in India from him and that his actions may endanger his business in the country.

What is India’s specific reference to Musk’s legal challenge?

In his counterclaims against Twitter’s lawsuit, Musk said the company’s decision to challenge the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) ban orders was a “departure from the normal course” given that it had previously blocked “pro-Ukrainian accounts of the Russian government.” Musk said that while he supports free speech, Twitter must follow the laws of the countries in which it operates. Musk said the social media platform did not inform him of the lawsuit against the Indian government, which puts the company’s third largest market “in jeopardy”.

Twitter, in response, stated that its procedures in India are in line with “universal practice” to challenge government requests or laws if it believes such requests are “not properly scoped by local law, procedurally flawed, or as necessary.” Defend the rights of its users, including freedom of expression. The company had filed a lawsuit against the Ministry of Commerce and Industry before the Karnataka High Court last month to challenge a few of the more than 1,400 ban orders it had received.

“If (Twitter) receives a valid and appropriately scoped request from an authorized body, it may block access to certain content in the specific jurisdiction that has issued a valid legal request or where the content has been found to violate local laws, but that it routinely pushes for restrictions on or otherwise challenge or object to government or laws requests when such requests are unauthorized or properly scoped by local law, procedurally flawed, or when necessary to defend the rights of its users,” the company said in response. to Musk’s counterclaims.

These requests were filed by Twitter in a Delaware District Court, where it sued Musk for wanting to end the purchase of the company. Last month, Musk said he wanted to terminate the deal because Twitter was in a “material breach” of their agreement and made “false and misleading” statements during negotiations. The billionaire agreed to buy the company for $44 billion in April.

Musk also said he was pulling out because Twitter fired its top executives and a third of its talent acquisition team, violating Twitter’s commitment to “significantly maintain the physical components of its existing business organization.”

What is the legal Twitter case in India?

In its lawsuit against the Indian government’s ban orders, Twitter told the Karnataka High Court that MeitY is “increasingly” issuing orders to ban entire accounts without informing the company of the specific tweets issued by these accounts calling for their ban. Many URLs contain political and journalistic content. In its petition, the company said that blocking such information is a flagrant violation of the freedom of expression guaranteed to citizens using the platform.

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