Even after being identified by Facebook's security team as a dangerous organisation that incites violence against minorities across India, the Bajrang Dal has been permitted to increase its presence on the social media platform, The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, December 13.
The social media giant has failed on acting against the right-wing group because "cracking down on Bajrang Dal might endanger both the company's business prospects and its staff in India", the journal wrote.
The latest report cited Facebook's actions related to a video by the Bajrang Dal which claimed responsibility for an attack on a church outside New Delhi in June.
"Besides risking infuriating India's ruling Hindu nationalist politicians, banning Bajrang Dal might precipitate physical attacks against Facebook personnel or facilities," the journal cited an inside Facebook report.
"A group of Facebook's employees said in an internal letter and posts on Facebook discussion groups that the presence of Bajrang Dal on its platform, among other organisations, casts doubt on the company's commitment to tackle hate speech in India," it said.
In August, the Journal had reported on an alleged bias in Facebook's policies that supported the ruling BJP. Citing business reasons, Facebook's top official in India 'opposed applying hate-speech rules' to individuals and groups linked with the BJP, the report mentioned.
The journal alleged that former Facebook executive Ankhi Das came out in support of a leader of the BJP who made anti-Muslim comments. According to the report, Das had told the staff members that 'punishing violations by BJP politicians would damage the company's business prospects in the country, Facebook's biggest global market by a number of users.'
Facebook, however, denied all charges and defended itself in front of a parliamentary committee against allegations of bias and concerns about the safety of user data.
Soon after, Das also resigned from the company.
In response to the Wall Street Journal report, Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone said: "We enforce our Dangerous Individuals and Organizations policy globally without regard to a political position or party affiliation."