The panel’s grilling of Twitter additionally triggered a disagreement between BJP and Congress with former minister Shashi Tharoor questioning its mandate and committee chair Meenakshi Lekhi responding that Congress members had been additionally a part of the deliberations. The panel directed Twitter to submit an affidavit in every week on why it took no motion in opposition to the “offensive” tweets.
Even as Twitter mentioned it will reply to the panel’s queries, Tharoor, who chairs the standing committee on info expertise, requested who authorised the panel to take up a matter not associated to its mandate.
“Dear @M_Lekhi, as far as I am aware, your committee was formed for consultations on the Data Protection Bill and its mandate is to report on the statutory provisions continued in the draft bill. Could you clarify if you have taken on additional responsibilities and on whose authority?” Tharoor requested on Twitter.
“I expected better from a person heading the standing committee on IT. His own colleague (Congress MP Vivek Tankha) was present in the meeting and concurred with me on a public platform. Tharoor should check with him before displaying his lack of understanding. In any case, they must understand that national interest matters most. I am not interested in playing ping-ball between Congress and BJP over such issues,” Lekhi instructed TOI.
Tharoor’s query was echoed by Congress MPs Karti Chidambaram and Jairam Ramesh, each of whom mentioned the joint committee had “no jurisdiction” over the matter.
Lekhi, nonetheless, shot again that “national interest” trumped all else. Lekhi mentioned such public squabbling “suits the agenda of the likes of Twitter” which would like to flee scrutiny.
According to parliamentary custom, committees agency up the themes they are going to take up after they’re constituted every year and don’t deviate from them. The situation of information privateness, nonetheless, has been taken up each by the standing committee on IT and the joint committee.