Is Facebook Instagram Twitter banned in India?

Is Facebook Instagram Twitter banned in India?

The news of popular social media apps like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook getting banned has flooded the Internet. Many have speculated that these apps will be banned.

But why do such speculations arise in the first place? The Indian government has come up with a set of rules for these apps and gave three months to all the social media giants to comply with the rules but none of them except the Koo app has followed it.

Today the date has expired and netizens are speculating about these apps.

What can cause the banning of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter in India?

The Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MEITy)  has released a set of rules which has created all this controversy. The new IT rules state that:

  • Action should be taken against the content flagged by authorities and it should be removed within 36 hours.
  • Compliance officers need to be appointed from India which will monitor the contents and remove the objectionable contents.
  • Publishing a monthly compliance report is also compulsory under this rule which will include the details of complaints reported and action taken. 
  • Mentioning Physical contact addresses will be also necessary for the social media giants. 
  • nudity or morphed photos will have to be taken down within 24 hours of receiving a complaint.
  • The first originator of a message must be informed if the government asks, however, the rules state that the content of the message will not be disclosed. 
  • Those who want voluntary verification of the account must be given a mechanism to do so.


These rules apply to social media apps with a user base of more than 50 lakhs people and also include all the OTT platforms. Only the Koo app, the Indian version of Twitter, has complied with these rules. 

The problem with the rules is that some of them are unconstitutional and damage the basic spirit of democracy. Some of the rules invade user privacy and threaten the right to privacy of an Indian. The rules, if used in the wrong way, can become a manipulative tool and suppress the Freedom of speech. 

If WhatsApp accepts these rules then the end-to-end encryption of the app will be over. 

In response to these rules, Facebook said, “We aim to comply with the provisions of the IT rules and continue to discuss a few of the issues which need more engagement with the government. Following the IT rules, we are working to implement operational processes and improve efficiencies. Facebook remains committed to people’s ability to freely and safely express themselves on our platform.”

As per reports, Whatsapp has sued the center claiming that the new IT rules are a threat to users' privacy. Whatsapp says that it cannot unmask any specific person and to do so it will need to end its end-to-end encryption which will pose a threat to users' privacy. 

Many have even criticized the rules and regulations on OTT platforms because the censorship of media and films was started by Britishers to suppress the voice of people. So such censorship holds no meaning in free India unless it is to be used for suppressing the voice of people. 

If these apps do not follow these rules then they will lose their status as and protections as intermediaries and criminal action can be taken against them under Indian laws.