The Supreme Court of India has asked for a response from Facebook-owned messaging platform, WhatsApp, on a matter about blocking videos of sexual offences on the platform. The court has reportedly allowed WhatsApp to send a detailed email to make a presentation, through video conferencing if possible, to explore a technical solution on how such videos can be blocked. The court made WhatsApp party to the case after the app was mentioned by Aparna Bhat, advocate for the petitioner.
"On an oral request made by the counsel for the petitioner, WhatsApp Inc having office at 1601, Willow Road, Menlo Park, California - 94025, United States of America is made a party-respondent," said a bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta.
The court issued a notice to WhatsApp, which is “returnable” on April 13. The counsel for the petitioner has also been allowed to send a detailed email to the respondent to make a presentation to WhatsApp.
Earlier, on March 22, the court had created a committee of representatives from the Centre and major Internet companies to find a technical solution to block videos showing sexual offences on social networking websites. The committee includes nominees from Google India, Yahoo India, Microsoft India and Facebook, who were given 15 days to find a solution.
The case originally started from a letter sent to then Chief Justice of India H L Dattu, by NGO Prajwala, along with two rape videos.