Indian Government still blocks 20+ websites – Indian Censorship on Internet


Indian Government has blocked 20+ major websites to counter ISIS propaganda. The government has removed blocking of github.com, vimeo.com and other 10+ websites blocked till December 31, 2014.

A confidential department of telecom order – dated December 17, 2014 – instructing all internet service licensees to block the websites appeared online on Wednesday.

When contacted to verify the news, Dr Gulshan Rai – Director of the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) – told, the directions had been issued to internet service providers following a Mumbai Additional Chief metropolitan magistrate’s November order directing the government’s Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) to implement the same.

Pranesh Prakash – Policy Director at Bengaluru-based Center for Internet and Society – questioned the lack of transparency around the practice of blocking websites under the Indian law. “Qn for govt: Why does the law require secrecy of web blocking orders when it doesn’t allow such secrecy for books, films? #GoIBlocks,” he tweeted, adding, “The 69A Rules don’t allow for transparency, accountability, time-limits on blocks, etc. So easily misused by govt. + courts + individuals.” The websites were blocked under section 69 A of the IT Act, 2000 and the IT (Procedure and sdafeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) rules, 2009.

“By blocking vimeo and dailymotion along with other websites, India is walking in the footsteps of Pakistan,” tweeted @baawraman.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tweet from August 2012 condemning blanket blocking of websites can be pulled out for recirculation. “As a common man, I join the protest against crackdown on freedom of speech! Have changed my DP. ‘Sabko Sanmati De Bhagwan.’ #GOIBlocks,” Modi had tweeted on August 24, 2012.

Currently, the Supreme Court is in the middle of hearing a clutch of petitions challenging several IT Act provisions, including blocking and takedown of websites.

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Indian Government still blocks 20+ websites – Indian Censorship on Internet

By: S Kumar Deka Read time: 6 min