Remove objectionable material from SM on AIADMK MP: HC

Remove objectionable material from SM on AIADMK MP: HC

AIADMK MP Sasikala Pushpa. File photo

The Delhi High Court Monday directed Facebook and Google to remove allegedly derogatory material relating to expelled AIADMK MP Sasikala Pushpa after she said that some unknown persons were threatening to tarnish her image by uploading her morphed photos and videos.

Justice Yogesh Khanna said since the counsel for Pushpa has provided the URLs, the social media platforms should remove such materials forthwith, preferably today.

The court also asked the platforms to file their written submissions and listed the matter for further hearing on January 14 next year.

Earlier, the court had restrained Facebook India, Google India, YouTube and Twitter India from publishing or showing any derogatory photographs of the Rajya Sabha MP.

However, they were deleted as parties and parent US companies were arrayed as parties in the suit.

During the hearing, advocate Bhavook Chauhaan, appearing for Pushpa, said he has filed an application giving the URLs which contain derogatory material and the platforms be directed to remove them.

The counsel, appearing for the platforms, referred to a Supreme Court verdict and said that such materials are removed through court order or as notified by the government.

The court was hearing a plea by Pushpa seeking an injunction order against the social media platforms on the ground that they have not made any attempt to verify the authenticity of the photographs before uploading it.

Earlier, Pushpa's counsel had alleged that after she refused to resign as a party MP, some unknown persons had threatened that they would distribute the pictures to all media houses and upload them on social media, which would severely defame and embarrass her.

Pushpa, who was expelled from AIADMK in August 2016, had said in her plea that the issue arose after she informed Parliament that she had been slapped by an AIADMK leader in Chennai and was facing death threats.

She had also said a false complaint was filed against her and her family members for allegedly ill-treating and sexually abusing two domestic aides in the year 2011.

Her counsel had said she was protected from arrest in the case by the Supreme Court, which has asked her to join the probe.

The plea stated that on September 19, 2016, Pushpa received a phone call with the caller saying he would update few photographs and videos on YouTube and cause physical and mental harm to her.

"The person threatened her to resign from her constitutional post or else he will start spreading false rumours and allegations against the plaintiff, including false statements regarding her moral character. Further, he will also upload lot of pictures on social media," the plea said. 

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