No clampdown on information in social media-Supreme Court of India.The Supreme Court of India has given a warning to the governments that there should not be any clampdown on social media messages from people seeking help. It praised the role of social media in these difficult times. People are requesting through social media for essentials like oxygen, hospital beds, and medicines for treatment Even before the pandemic, social media proved to be very useful for the public seeking information and help.
Recently, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister issued a threatening statement that people who are spreading misinformation would be detained under the National Security Act and their property seized. He refused to accept that there is a shortage of oxygen in the State and anyone making such an appeal on social media will be dealt with severely. One person was also arrested by the U.P. Police. The Government of India also got certain tweets and comments deleted from Twitter and Facebook. The deletions are critical of the governments handling of the pandemic and various other matters. The government said they were all misinformation.
The Supreme Court commented that any clampdown on the social media messages seeking help will be treated as contempt of the court. This is a timely observation by the Apex Court. The government is unable to help and at the same time appeals on social media are treated as false information and trying to punish them.