Twitter censors tweets critical of Modi regime’s Covid response

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Washington

Twitter has said that it took down dozens of tweets in India after the Modi government requested the American microblogging and social networking service to remove dozens of tweets critical of the country’s pandemic response, which has drawn global attention as case numbers and deaths continue surging to record levels.

Twitter said it took down dozens of tweets in India that were critical of the Indian government’s recent pandemic response, as a second wave of COVID infections continues to bring the country’s healthcare system to its knees.

Over 20 tweets, some from Indian lawmakers, were reportedly withheld from public view in India in response to a notice by the Indian government to the social media giant.

The Modi government made the request on April 23, and it was disclosed by Lumen Database, an online transparency project run by Harvard University.

The list of censored tweets includes several by parliamentarian Revanth Reddy from the opposition Congress party, West Bengal state minister Moloy Ghatak, and filmmakers Vinod Kapri and Avinash Das.

Many tweets denounced the Narendra Modi led-government for failing to bolster India’s crumbling healthcare system.

Other tweets questioned the decision to hold election rallies and the Hindu gathering Kumbh Mela as COVID cases continued to soar.

The number of new COVID infections in India is currently setting records nearly every day.

Images of mass cremations for COVID victims are being shared on social media, along with criticism of the Modi government.

Hospitals across the country are running out of beds, oxygen and medicines, and people are turning to social media with frantic calls for help.—KMS

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