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Carnatic singer TM Krishna files petition against IT rules 2021, says it imposes ‘chilling effect on free speech’

Carnatic singer TM Krishna files petition against IT rules 2021, says it imposes 'chilling effect on free speech'
Written by bobby

New Delhi: TM Krishna, musician and Carnatic singer, has filed a petition to challenge the validity of the newly-implemented digital media guidelines – the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules of 2021.

Following this, the Madras High Court issued a notice to the Centre as reported by Live Law.

Through his lawyer, TM Krishna argued that the new laws breach freedom of expression and privacy which, he states, are basic rights of every citizen.

According to the Live Law report, here’s what he wrote in his affidavit, “I submit the impugned rules offend my rights as an artist and a cultural commentator by both imposing a chilling effect on free speech and impinging on my right to privacy.”

“For me, privacy, like music, is an experience. When I think of privacy, I think of life, intimacy, discovery, security, happiness, lack of fear and freedom to create. I think of liberty, dignity and choice, as facets inherent in me, not just as an artist but as a human being”, he further wrote.

The new rules, announced on February 25, require large social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp to follow additional due diligence, including the appointment of a chief compliance officer, nodal contact person and resident grievance officer.

Non-compliance with rules would result in these social media companies losing the intermediary status that provides them exemptions and certain immunity from liabilities for any third-party information and data hosted by them. In other words, they could be liable for criminal action in case of complaints.

TM Krishna is a renowned Carnatic vocalist, writer, activist, and recipent of the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award.

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