Tech firms have skipped submitting status reports to the Centre in adherence to the newly introduced directives on AI. Ministry of Electronics and IT had set March 15 deadline for the companies to submit their reports.

A highly placed source, close to the development, told businessline that social media intermediaries are still seeking further clarifications from the government on the exact specifics of the AI directives issued by the Centre. 

“We are seeking an extension from the Ministry to submit the report,” said another source.

On March 1, the Ministry of Electronics and IT issued an advisory to all social media intermediaries and other digital platforms to ensure that the new generative AI models open to the public are not detrimental to the electoral process. This came after Google’s large language model, Gemini was found to be biased against the Prime Minister. 

While the advisory is not legally binding it asks digital platforms to seek prior approval from the Centre before launching them in India if “the use of under-testing/unreliable Artificial Intelligence model(s)/LLM/Generative AI, software(s) or algorithm(s)”

The companies have to also make sure that their platforms do not peddle misinformation. MeitY had issued a notice warning platforms that failing to comply could result in legal action.

‘Regulatory overreach’

Most technologists saw some of the demands as regulatory overreach by the Centre.  Aravind Srinivas, co-founder and chief executive of Perplexity AI, one of the hottest AI start-ups in Silicon Valley, said the new advisory from New Delhi was a “bad move by India.” Many start-ups were also concerned regarding the impact this advisory will have on India oriented innovation in AI.

Since then, the Centre issued many clarifications to the original order. IT Minister Rajeev Chandrashekhar also went on Twitter to clarify that this advisory is not targeting start-ups and should be seen as an insurance policy by digital platforms to protect them from future litigation from users.

“What has happened as a result is that tech platforms are confused about the exact implications of the advisory and the next steps they should take,” the source told businessline. . 

Meta, Google and Microsoft did not respond to businessline’s queries at the time of filing the report.