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Google Apologizes For Derogatory Search Result About Kannada; PIL In Karnataka HC Withdrawn

Mustafa Plumber
8 Sep 2021 8:37 AM GMT
Google Apologizes For Derogatory Search Result About Kannada; PIL In Karnataka HC Withdrawn
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The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday disposed of a public interest litigation filed seeking to direct initiation of penal action against Google India Private Limited, after a search on the platform showed Kannada as the answer to "ugliest language in India". Petitioner, Anti Corruption Council Of India Trust had approached the court seeking directions to the Union and...

The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday disposed of a public interest litigation filed seeking to direct initiation of penal action against Google India Private Limited, after a search on the platform showed Kannada as the answer to "ugliest language in India".

Petitioner, Anti Corruption Council Of India Trust had approached the court seeking directions to the Union and State government to initiate legal action under the Indian Penal code and Information Technology Act. Further, it had sought direction to the company to pay a compensation of Rs 10 crore for causing lowering/tarnishing/defaming the dignity and significance of the Kannada language and the same may be deposited with the Department of Culture and Heritage, Government of Karnataka.

The petition filed through The Legal Attorneys and Barristers law firm brought to the notice of the court that later on Google India had tendered an apology in the matter.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum in its order noted that:

"The petition has been filed against Google India private limited as well as other respondents, stating that on google some derogatory remark has been made in respect of Kannada language, the petitioner himself has filed copy of the newspaper clipping. The contention of the petitioner is that later on Google India, has tendered apology in the matter in terms of the content displayed on the website, assuring that such incidents will not take place in future."

It added,

"Learned counsel appearing for the petitioner at this stage prays for withdrawal of the petition with the liberty to take recourse to the other remedies available in law. The PIL is disposed of in the above terms."

In its statement issued on Twitter, Google said that the search feature wasn't always perfect, and that sometimes "the way content is described on the internet can yield surprising results to specific queries".

"We know this is not ideal, but we take swift corrective action when we are made aware of an issue and are continually working to improve our algorithms," the statement said. "Naturally, these are not reflective of the opinions of Google, and we apologise for the misunderstanding and hurting any sentiments."

Case Title: Anti Corruption Council Of India Trust And Union Of India

Case No: WP 9994/2021.

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