Indian Govt is inclined towards enforcing a more stringent internet policy – Report

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A lot is talked about Web censorship in countries like China and Iran in the Indian media. However, now it seems like given a chance, the Indian government itself will opt for a much stricter Internet policy to regulate what the citizens are browsing.

During a heading in the Supreme Court, representatives of the central government argued that restriction on the Internet should be tougher than that for television or print. The government representative s made this statement while providing justifications for the retention of the penal provision of Section 66A of the Information Technology Act.

As per reports, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the apex court that to develop a consistent mechanism for regulating what people can see online was a need of the hour.

“There are institutions which are working in other media whether it is paper, television or cinema,” said Mehta. “There is an institutional approach and there are checks like pre-censorship for TV and films. But in Internet there is individual approach and there is no checks and balances or license.”

Mehta argued that because information spreads rapidly on the Internet – all thanks to the power of social media – it was pivotal to have a strict policy in place in order to counter the evil effects of the Web.

“Considering the reach and impact of medium, leeway be given to legislature to frame rules,” he said. “On the Internet every individual is a director, producer and broadcaster and a person can send offensive material to millions of people at a same time in nanosecond just with a click of button.”

“It is not possible to outrage someone’s modesty through print and television but it can be easily done through internet,” he said.

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