Monday, July 17, 2006

Blocking Blogs In India

A couple of days back, the Mumbai blogger Amit Varma reported that many were unable to access blogs from blogger and he speculated that the government (of India) might have instructed ISP's to block them. Rediff reports today that the government has indeed asked ISP's to block blogs in India.

I remember reading somewhere that one reason why the government chose to block blogs was because of the suspicion (or perhaps on evidence) that terrorist organizations were using them as a means of communication and the blockade was only temporary. I hope that is true.

By the way, I had no idea until now that we had something like the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) in India.

There is more of the story here.

Update 1: The Hindu has a story on the blocking of blogs by the goverment. Many sources mention that the reason for the gag may be to cut of lines of communication of extremists; however, no one seems to provide real evidence that this is infact so.

Update 2: The BBC too has a report on this ban and writes about what the bloggers are doing about it. Rediff reports today that the ban will be lifted in 48 hours.

Update 3: The Hindu has a strongly worded editorial today (07/21/06) on this issue. A notable sentence in the editorial says "In general, though, free speech must remain unfettered and protected vigorously as one of the most prized of freedoms". Absolutely true! I think thats the bottom line of this whole thing.

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