No WhatsApp Group Admin can be held liable for objectionable content by a group member unless it is decided that such a plan was pre-decided by the member and the administrator.
If an objectionable or obscene post is made on a WhatsApp group, then the group administrator will not be guilty for that. The Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court recently held that a WhatsApp group administrator cannot be held liable for objectionable content posted by a member of the group until it is decided that it is deliberately agreed upon by all Or done under pre arranged plan.
With this order, the court dismissed an FIR registered in July 2016 on a 33-year-old man who was an administrator of a WhatsApp group for not taking action against a group member. This case was related to the use of “dirty” and “indecent” language against a woman member in the group. A division bench of Justices ZA Haq and Justice Amit B Borkar ruled last month on a criminal application through advocate Rajendra M Daga of Kishore Chintaman Tarun (33), who filed an FIR and charge sheet filed against him at the Arjun-Morgan police station. Lets challenge.
The administrator has limited control
After denying the functioning of the WhatsApp message service, the bench considered the role of an administrator and said, “Once a group is created, the functioning of the administrator and the members are equal to each other, only the rights to add or remove. Except that the group member or administrator does not have the power to regulate, moderate or censor the content before posting it on the group. But, if a member of the group posts any material which is actionable under the law, then such person can be held liable under the relevant provisions of the law. ”
Admin not responsible for post
Commenting on the criminal liability of a group administrator for a member’s post, the bench said, “The administrator of a WhatsApp group cannot be held liable for objectionable content by the group member until it is ascertained.” That such a plan was preordained by the member and the administrator. ” The bench said, “When a person forms a WhatsApp group, it cannot be expected to take prior knowledge of the criminal acts of the group member.”
The FIR lodged against Kishore Tarone alleged that he did not take action against the member of his WhatsApp group who had made obscene remarks against the woman member. Tarone also alleged that he neither removed the member from the group nor asked him to apologize. With this, the court pronounced the verdict in favor of Tarone and dismissed the FIR Corps.
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