Barkha Dutt exposes Twitter’s enabling of sexual abusers


Award-winning Indian journalist Barkha Dutt on Tuesday slammed micro-blogging website Twitter for locking her out of her social media account following her decision to publicly name men who had targeted her with images of their genitals and abusive phone calls including one where she was given a death threat.

“I would like to place on record my absolute horror and disgust at Twitter’s encouragement of sexual abuse and gender inequality. I have been locked out of Twitter because I outed the names and numbers along with evidence of men who stalked me, threatened me with rape and sent me pictures of their genitals,” she wrote in a mail to Twitter, a screenshot of which she shared on the social media platform itself.

Dutt had become the target of abuse after retweeted former BJP MP Tarun Vijay’s post saying “my doors are open to all patriotic Indians” after a few schools and colleges reportedly announced that they wouldn’t enrol Kashmiri students in light of the Pulwama terror attack.

After the multiple abusive calls and messages which Dutt claimed to be around 1000, she shared the names and numbers of those who were hiding behind keyboards and screens only to have Twitter take action against her instead.

“I got a mail from them saying you had violated Twitter rules,” she told while shedding light on the fact that no such measures are taken against abusers.

This is not the first time the workings of Twitter has been laid out in the open. Many women, prominent and non-prominent, have complained about lax rules against abuse on the social media site.

According to an Amnesty International report published in December 2018, 1.1 million abusive or problematic tweets were sent to women in 2018, an average of one every 30 seconds. Interestingly, most of these women included women journalists and politicians, positions of power in which many men do not want to see and accept women.