Twitter arbitrarily removes ‘blue tick’ verification from account of Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, restores after backlash – OpIndia

The micro-blogging site Twitter on Friday arbitrarily removed ‘blue-tick’ verification from Vice President of India M Venkaiah Naidu’s personal Twitter handle.

On Saturday morning, several social media users pointed out that Twitter has unverified Vice President Venkaiah Naidu from its platform by removing “blue tick” from his personal account.

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The micro-blogging site has not provided any explanation so far as they acted against the Vice President of India. Some suggest that Twitter unverified the account as it was in an inactive state for a few weeks. VP Venkaiah Naidu has been using the official account of ‘Vice President of India (@VPSecretariat) to communicate on Twitter ever since he was elected to the post. The last tweet posted from his personal account, ‘@MVenkaiahNaidu’, was on January 9 this year, and it had become inactive ever since then.

However, several others have also contended that several accounts remain verified despite not being active for several months.

Twitter restores verification badge of the Vice President of India after severe backlash

After massive backlash, Twitter restored the verification badge on the Twitter profile of the Vice President of India.

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Verification badge restored

It is still not clear, however, why the verification was removed by Twitter in the first place.

Twitter had removed Jammu and Kashmir L-G’s account, censored Amit Shah

This is not the first time that the micro-blogging site is acting arbitrarily on accounts associated with the nationalist Indian government. A few weeks back, social media giant Twitter suspended the official account of Lieutenant Governor of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha. The real reason behind the suspension was not clear, though several media reports claim the account was taken down for violating the platform’s rules.

After suspending the account without any reason, Twitter had posted a message saying, “Twitter suspends accounts that violate the Twitter Rules”.

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In November last year, the microblogging site had stoked a controversy by removing the Twitter display picture of Union Home Minister Amit Shah in response to a “report from the copyright holder”. According to Shah’s website, Twitter had locked Home Minister Amit Shah’s account after the copyright claim on his display image, which was a part of his official portrait.

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After netizens expressed outrage against Twitter’s unilateral action without apparent verification, the micro-blogging site reinstated Amit Shah’s display picture.

The unilateral action by Twitter is not just limited to BJP politicians but extends to average citizens as well, who might not conform to the left ideology that Jack Dorey said Twitter leans towards. Recently, Twitter had permanently suspended popular Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut’s account, accusing her of violating their platforms’ rules and regulations. The same scrutiny, however, did not apply to Islamist Sharjeel Usmani and several others who have been wishing and celebrating the deaths of those who do not share their worldview.

Twitter, interestingly, has also refused to submit to the laws of India and has locked horns with the Indian government over its arbitrary decision making to favour a particular ideology on its platform. The Indian government has been requesting the micro-blogging site to comply with Indian laws on social media intermediaries, however, the social media giant has brazened it out to claim that it needs more time to comply with Indian laws.