Will close down Facebook in India, Karnataka HC warns social media giant
The bench said that the Central government should give information on what action has been initiated in the case of arrest of an Indian citizen in a false case
The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday warned Facebook that it would consider issuing an order to close down the social media giant's activities in India following its alleged non-cooperation with the state police over investigation of the case of an imprisoned Indian citizen in Saudi Arabia.
A bench of Justice Krishna S. Dixit gave the warning while taking up a petition submitted by Kavitha, a resident of Bikarnakatte near Mangaluru in Dakshina Kannada district.
"The complete report with required information should be submitted in a week before the court," the bench directed Facebook.
It also said that the Central government should give information on what action has been initiated in the case of arrest of an Indian citizen in a false case. Mangaluru police also will have to take up proper investigation and submit a report, the court said, adjourning the hearing to June 22.
Kavitha, in her plea, said that her husband Shailesh Kumar, 52 worked with a company in Saudi Arabia for 25 years, while she lived at her native place with their children.
She said that he had put up a message on Facebook in support of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC) in 2019 but unknown people opened a fake Facebook account in his name, and posted objectionable posts against the King of Saudi Arabia and Islam.
As soon as it came to his knowledge, Kumar had informed the family and Kavitha had lodged a police complaint in Mangaluru in this regard. However, Saudi police had arrested Shailesh Kumar and put him in prison.
The Mangaluru police taking up the investigation had written a letter to Facebook and sought information on the opening of the fake Facebook account. But, Facebook had not responded to the police. In 2021, petitioner had approached the High Court questioning delay in the investigation.
Kavitha had also written a letter to the Central government to get her husband released from the prison.