Toolkit Case: Delhi Police questions Twitter India head

Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari was questioned by Delhi Police over BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra’s tweet being tagged as “manipulated media”, revealed sources.

Earlier this year, Delhi Police initiated a probe into what has come to be known as the ‘Congress toolkit’ case. The matter started out with BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra putting out a tweet alleging that Congress had prepared a toolkit to target the government over its handling of the Covid-19 pandemic. Micro-blogging site Twitter later tagged Sambit Patra’s tweet as “manipulated media”.

Now, sources told India Today that a team of the Delhi Police travelled to Bengaluru on May 31 of this year to question Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari in connection with the case.

Government sources say that the Delhi Police’s probe is not only establishing a clearer picture of Twitter India’s links with the US-based parent company but also revealing a “complex web of the corporate veil to mislead Indian law-enforcing entities”.

Delhi Police had sent notices to Twitter India seeking details about why Sambit Patra’s tweet over Congress’s alleged “toolkit” was tagged as “manipulated media”. A decision to question Twitter India’s Managing Director was taken after Delhi Police received “evasive” responses to its notices, said top sources in the government.

Earlier, the Delhi Police had offered to travel to Manish Maheshwari’s doorstep in a bid to ensure that he could answer all relevant questions in connection with the case. In response, Twitter India MD Manish Maheshwari provided his Bengaluru address and said he would personally join the probe.

“Manipulation starts at the doorstep of Twitter itself. Twitter should start fact-checking its own employees. The senior-most employee of Twitter India has misrepresented people at large by announcing Maheshwari as Managing Director when he claims to be mere sales head when asked to take responsibility,” said a senior source in the government familiar with the facts of the case.
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