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Twitter, IRCTC Summoned by Shashi Tharoor-Led Panel Over Data Security

Twitter and Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has been asked to appear before the Congress MP Shashi Tharoor-led Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology on Friday. The microblogging site and railway ticketing app have been summoned to discuss concerns over “citizens’ data security and privacy”. The parliamentary meeting comes days after the centre withdrew Personal Data Protection (PDP) Bill, 2019. It will now be replaced it with a new bill.

As informed to PTI by sources, the Tharoor-led parliamentary panel will question Twitter on its management and composition. The social media platform can also be questioned about whether it has extended favours to a particular political party.

Meanwhile, the IRCTC, with more than 10 crore users, has hired a consultant to monetise passenger data. The panel may seek answers for the reason to hire a consultant. IRCTC can also be questioned about the tender floated to hire for the consultant’s job, the sources said.

According to the sources, the Tharoor-led panel has been holding meetings with various stakeholders regarding data security and privacy. These include tech companies, social media firms, ministries, and other regulators. The panel is likely to finalise its report before August 30.

Earlier this month, the union government led by Information and Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw announced to withdraw the Personal Data Protection (PDP) Bill, 2019. This legislation will be now replaced with a “comprehensive bill” for “contemporary digital privacy laws”.