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Facebook to face trial in France over nude painting case

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PARIS — Social networking company Facebook would be tried in France for blocking a Frenchprofessor’s account after he posted a picture of a nude painting, a media report said.

A French court decided on Friday that a file against the company over a painting of a nude woman can be tried in France, rejecting Facebook’s argument that it is governed by Californian law, Reuters reported.

Facebook was sued by a French professor whose account was blocked after he posted a nineteenth century painting by Gustave Courbet, ‘The Origin of the World’, portraying a women’s genitalia.

The professor filed a case against the company, saying the site could not differentiate between pornography and art.

A Paris appeals court threw out Facebook’s appeal after the company argued that only the US courts had jurisdiction to hear cases against it.

The professor’s lawyer Stephane Cottineau said, “They might be multi-nationals but the court ruling means they are not outside French law. If they set up in France and contract workers here, then French law must be applied to them,” Cottineau added.

Facebook, based in Palo Alto, California, had appealed against a Paris High Court’s authority to hear the case but the appeal court said Facebook’s claim was inadmissible.

Facebook said French courts were not competent to handle the case and that the contract with the user was “not a consumer contract because Facebook’s service was free.”

The French court will now decide whether or not the professor’s freedom of expression was violated.

Agencies

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World Bank to provide Rs 16 billion to 21 municipalities

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GALKOT- The World Bank is to invest tens of millions of rupees for the infrastructure development of Baglung Municipality.

Mayor of Baglung Municipality Janak Raj Poudel said that the WB is investing approximately Rs 16 billion in 21 municipalities throughout the country, including Baglung Municipality, through the Urban Administrative Capacity and Infrastructure Improvement Project II.

The Project organized a meeting some days back with mayors, deputy mayors, the chief administrative officers and engineers of the municipalities concerned and informed them about the local levels selected for the funding and the works to be carried out under the project.

According to mayor Poudel, four municipalities in Gandaki Province have been selected for the implementation of the project. These include Baglung Municipality in Baglung district, Vyas Municipality and Shukla Gandaki municipality in Tanahu district and Putalibazaar Municipality in Syangja district.

Poudel said each municipality will get between approximately Rs 700 million to Rs 800 million after the Project allocates the budget by preparing the indices.

The road taken as the ‘Ring Road’ of Baglung Municipality was constructed under the first phase of this Project. Mayor Poudel said that the municipality will spend the fund received from the Project in the ‘pride’ projects of the municipality.

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