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Google, Facebook File Plea, “We Don’t Control Content on Our Websites”

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The Delhi High Court today issued notice to city police on petitions filed by Facebook India and Google India challenging the trial court order which had summoned them and other websites to face a criminal case for allegedly webcasting objectionable content.

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Google and Facebook had said in their petition that they do not exercise any control over content on their websites in India, and thus they can’t be summoned to an Indian court in a criminal case related to inflammatory images of Gods and Goddesses posted on some of their websites.

The trial court had on December 23 summoned representatives of 21 social networking sites including Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Yahoo and YouTube taking cognisance of a private criminal complaint.

The Metropolitan Magistrate had said, “It appears from a bare perusal of documents that prima facie the accused in connivance with each other and other unknown persons are selling, publicly exhibiting and have put into circulation obscene, lascivious content.”

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The Magistrate had summoned the companies to face a criminal case under section 292 (sale of obscene books etc), 293 (sale of obscene objects to young person etc) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC.

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