Police notice to Twitter's ex-grievance officer in Ghaziabad assault case
The Ghaziabad Police has sent a notice to Twitter's former grievance officer in India, Dharmendra Chatur, in connection with the Loni assault video case. This is the third police notice to Twitter India officials in this case after two notices were sent to the company's Managing Director Manish Maheshwari, who has since moved court. Here are more details on this.
The notice to Chatur was issued under Section 41A of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPc), asking him to appear before police and record his statement, reported The Times of India. Chatur had notably resigned from his job in June, within weeks of his appointment. Police, however, said he is accountable since he held the position when the Loni assault controversy happened.
"The assault...took place in Loni on June 5 and the fake video was circulated over the next few days," Ghaziabad Police officer Amit Kumar Pathak said. "We have reasons to believe that during that point, Chatur was the grievance officer of Twitter India. In case there is a change in position, it is for Chatur to respond to the notice and state the facts."
Police also issued notices to Congress party's Salman Nizami, Maskoor Usmani, and Shama Mohamed, and the editor of the news portal The Wire, who are also named in the FIR. Akhilesh Kumar Mishra, the SHO of the Loni Border Police station said the notices were issued on July 2. "They have been directed to record their statements at the police station within seven days."
For the unversed, a video showing an elderly Muslim man, Abdul Samad, being assaulted in Ghaziabad's Loni area went viral on Twitter last month. Even though he claimed in a separate video that he was beaten up by Hindu men and forced to chant "Jai Shree Ram," police said there was "no communal angle" to the incident and his claims were fabricated.
Meanwhile, Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair and writer-journalist Saba Naqvi, also accused in this case, have recorded their statements. Maheshwari, the company MD, on the other hand, has been repeatedly asked by cops to record his statement at the Loni Police station. He, however, has sought temporary relief from court and further hearings in the matter are underway.
Legal troubles for Twitter - which recently lost legal protection in India over non-compliance of the Indian government's new Information Technology rules - do not seem to stop. Just last week, two separate FIRs were filed in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh against senior Twitter officials over complaints of a wrong map of India on the company's website.