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Sushma Swaraj assures help for Pakistani teen Ramzan’s return to his homeland

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Bhopal: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Sunday met Ramzan, a 14-year-old Pakistani boy staying at an orphanage here in the Madhya Pradesh capital, and urged the neighboring country to help the boy meet his mother.

India wants Ramzan to go to his mother in Karachi. Pakistan will have to accept that Ramzan is Pakistan’s citizen. Even if there is no permit and travel documents, the Indian government is ready to give Visa to Ramzan’s mother,

Ramzan, a resident of Karachi, was living with his parents. However, due to strained relations with his mother, his father left for Bangladesh along with him, only to marry another woman.

According to sources, on being ill-treated continuously by his step-mother, Ramzan fled his home and through various routes reached Bhopal.

On finding him abandoned, members of Child Line, a child-care center, brought him to the orphanage.

Reports said Sushma Swaraj will on Monday visit Indore where she will meet Geeta, who, after a decade, returned to India after being handed over to the Indian authorities by Pakistan.

Geeta was around 11 years old when she crossed over to Pakistan by mistake in 2003.

In Lahore, Pakistan Rangers handed her over to the Edhi Foundation, a social welfare organization, that looked after her since then. She returned to India on October 26.

(Inputs from IANS)

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Government Pressure: WhatsApp to Limit Message Forwarding In INDIA

WhatsApp reacted: "In India, where people forward more messages, photos, and videos than any other country in the world, we'll also test a lower limit of 5 chats at once.

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The app is adding more features to group chats. Wikimedia commons

 Hauled up second time by the government on its failure to check the spread of fake and provocative content on its platform amid growing lynching episodes, Whatsapp on Friday said it is launching a test to limit message forwarding to five chats that will apply to its users in India.

In its second notice on Thursday, the Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) took a tough stand, asking WhatsApp to come out with more effective solutions that can bring in accountability and facilitate enforcement of law in addition to their efforts towards labelling forwards and identifying fake news.

“It has been conveyed to them in unmistakable terms that it is a very serious issue which deserves a more sensitive response,” MeitY said in the notice.

WhatsApp reacted: “In India, where people forward more messages, photos, and videos than any other country in the world, we’ll also test a lower limit of 5 chats at once.

“We will also remove the quick forward button next to media messages,” WhatsApp said in a statement.

The test, once comes to practice, will curtail WhatsApp’s services for over 200 million users in India. Globally, the company allows users to forward messages for up to 20 chats (either individuals or groups).

WhatsApp said that with new changes, which it will continue to evaluate, “will help keep WhatsApp the way it was designed to be: a private messaging app”.

“We are deeply committed to your safety and privacy which is why WhatsApp is end-to-end encrypted, and we’ll continue to improve our app with features like this one,” it added.

Whatsapp
“We will also remove the quick forward button next to media messages,” WhatsApp said in a statement. Pixabay

In its first reply to the IT Ministry, WhatsApp said the company is “horrified” by terrible acts of violence.

The IT Ministry had asked WhatsApp to ensure that the platform is not used for malafide activities over the growing instances of lynching of innocent people owing to large number of irresponsible messages filled with rumours being circulated on its platform.

The mobile messiging service listed several measures — including labelling Forwarding messages — in its first reply to control the spread of misinformation and abuse on its platform but failed to meet the requirements from the IT Ministry.

Several people have lost their lives in the past one year by lynch mobs after rumours of child lifting triggered via messages on WhatsApp.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh for the first time admitted in the Lok Sabha on Thursday that fake news on social media has resulted in many mob lynching incidents in the country, saying the government has asked service providers to put a check on rumour mongering on social media.

Also Read-WhatsApp Begins Rolling Out ‘Restrict Group’ Feature For Admins

Expressing concern over the misuse of social media, Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu also asked the government to evolve a national policy after discussing with all stakeholders including political parties to combat the menace.

The Supreme Court also issued 22 guidelines this week for the central and state governments to put an end to “horrendous acts” of vigilantism, lynching and mobocracy and directed them to work in tandem to take “preventive, remedial and punitive measures”. (IANS)