Facebook India Chief Summoned by Delhi Assembly Panel Over February Riots

facebook india head ajit mohan

A Delhi Assembly panel has summoned Facebook India vice president and managing director, Ajit Mohan, to face questions about the deadly riots that killed at least 50 people in the national capital earlier this year. In a statement issued over the weekend, the committee said that it had asked Mohan to appear before it on September 15 to answer allegations that Facebook allowed the situation to escalate by not properly implementing its own stated policies regarding hate speech and conspiracy theories.

According to a statement issued by the Delhi Assembly Committee on Peace and Harmony, the summon is based on “scathing depositions of key witnesses as well as incriminating material” submitted by victims and their lawyers. The committee, headed by AAP MLA, Raghav Chadha, opened its investigation following a Wall Street Journal report which claimed a senior Facebook executive in India personally stopped company employees from permanently banning a controversial BJP functionary from the platform for making incendiary remarks.

In its statement, the panel said that it had “received multiple complaints addressed to its Chairman Raghav Chadha against the officials concerned of Facebook for their alleged deliberate and intentional inaction to contain hateful content in India for vested reasons”.

“We hereby summon you (Ajit Mohan) to appear before the committee on September 15, 2020, at 12 noon at MLA Lounge-1, Delhi Vidhan Sabha, for the purpose of recording your deposition on oath and participating in the proceedings carried out by the committee”, the Delhi Assembly’s deputy secretary said in the notice sent on September 10. Facebook is yet to issue an official response to the summon.

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