New Delhi: Demanding a probe into the allegations emerging from a news report in a US daily that Facebook deliberately failed to take action against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders who violated its hate speech rules, the CPI(M) said the issue raises questions about the ruling party's investment in the leading social media platform and claimed that there is a "nexus" between them.
"The Politburo of the CPI(M) strongly condemns the role of global social media behemoth, Facebook, as exposed by the Wall Street Journal, particularly the functioning of its India policy chapter. Facebook is not following its own laid down policy against communal hate content," a statement from the Left party alleged.
"This confirms the overall apprehensions over Facebook’s activities across its three platforms: (the other two being) WhatsApp and Instagram. A stinging exposure by New York Times in 2018 revealed its questionable practices. This exposure raises serious questions about the huge social media investment and operations of the BJP and its role in promoting hate between communities," it said.
The statement also said the recent investment of Facebook in Reliance "strengthens the apprehension of monopoly control, especially, in the absence of an effective social media internal regulatory oversight".
The Communist Party of India (Marxist) said the "huge financial resources" at the disposal of BJP aided further by the "opaque electoral bonds scheme" completely ensures its control over social media.
Calling for an urgent and thorough enquiry into the "nexus" between Facebook-WhatsApp-Instagram and the BJP, the Left party said it was time to fix accountability and recommending effective mechanisms for barring these platforms from promoting communal hatred.
"The Politburo demands that a Joint Parliamentary Committee be immediately constituted to probe this nexus. Pending the findings of the JPC, FB should be barred from operating with any government department or constitutional body like the ECI etc," it said.
Facebook, that is at the centre of a political slugfest over allegations of supporting the ruling dispensation, on Monday said its social media platform prohibits hate speech and content that incites violence and these policies are enforced globally without regard to political affiliation.
However, the social media giant -- which counts India among its largest markets globally -- also acknowledged that "there is more to do".