Discussion of shutting down Facebook on election day

Discussion of shutting down Facebook on election day

Discussion of shutting down Facebook on election day.

Several secretaries have proposed to shut down the social media site Facebook on the day of the National Assembly election. They have recommended the closure of Facebook so that no one can spread false propaganda on election day.

An inter-ministerial meeting on the twelfth national parliament election discussed this issue. Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Habibul Awal presided over the meeting on November 1 in the conference room of the election building at Agargaon in the capital. Senior officials of the government gave their opinion to the Election Commission there. Several of them voted in favor of shutting down Facebook on election day, according to the minutes of the meeting.

A secretary who attended the meeting on the condition of anonymity told Prothom Alo on Monday that there is a risk of huge damage if Facebook is kept open on the election day. Rumor mongers can mislead voters by distorting a fact. For that reason, several secretaries in that meeting gave their opinion in favor of closing Facebook. However, the Election Commission will take the final decision on this matter.

When asked, Election Commission Additional Secretary Ashok Kumar Debnath told Prothom Alo that there was an opinion to shut down Facebook on polling day. However, no decision has been made on this matter. There is a meeting ahead. The matter will be discussed there.

According to the inter-ministerial meeting sources, Chief Information Officer of PID Shahenur Mia raised the issue of Facebook closure. Later some secretaries expressed their opinion in favor of this proposal. In their discussion, it is said that various kinds of rumors are being spread on social media around the national elections. Disinformation is being spread. This is creating confusion among the voters. It must be closed.

The Election Commission held a meeting with Meta Authority, the parent company of the social media last August, regarding the banning of misinformation on Facebook around the election. Discussions were held to ensure that no one spreads propaganda, hatred, violence and confusion on polling day. Another meeting between the two sides is scheduled for this.

Election Commission official Ashok Kumar Debnath said, in that meeting, the META authorities said that they want to work to prevent false propaganda during the elections. Another meeting is scheduled before the elections.

Secretary of the Financial Institutions Department, Sheikh Mohammad Salim Ullah, who was present at the inter-ministerial meeting, said that a circular will be issued from the Financial Institutions Department to collect and compile information in this regard in order to cancel the nomination papers of the defaulting candidates. He said, amendments have been brought in the Bank Company Act. Steps have been taken to prevent defaulters from participating in elections. Banks have been instructed to keep a watchful eye.

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