No, Minister

Recently, you asked social media and internet intermediaries (like Twitter, Facebook, etc) to exercise due diligence to block material deemed, threatening, abusive, harassing, blasphemous, objectionable, defamatory, or otherwise unlawful in any manner whatever. Well, Mr. Sibal, who decides whether something is abusive or objectionable? You!?

By the same logic, will mafia movies and soap operas be banned for being abusive and hurting communities? What about the debates on objectionable matters in news channels? What about our freedom of expression? Will you be the first one to read what we, 120 crore Indians wish to express, and then decide if it is appropriate or not? Don’t you know that Social media in itself is huge and dynamic? Any content that hurts a community is automatically debated on and scrutinized! Social websites do provide for a ‘report spam’ or ‘block’ button. These websites also remove objectionable content after getting complaints. If an issue goes out of control, well, there are cyber laws to monitor them. It is practically impossible to pre-screen everything that gets posted. Mr. Sibal, do you even know how Internet works?

Your recent statement is also a testament of an inefficient system, where a minister like you, who is entrusted with the responsibility of reforming and enabling IT and Communication gets busy with stealing our rights. It is even more shameful if you are doing this to deflect attention from more important issues. You as the HRD minister proposed the removal of board exams for 10th graders. You as the Telecom minister claimed that, there is ‘zero loss’ in the 2G scam. Well, 10th graders are still writing board exams and zero loss in 2G scam was one of your miscalculations! Right?

Running a nation is not a joke. Let’s get real Mr. Sibal! I have nothing against you or your government. But it is high time you start focusing on more important issues than simply bragging over unnecessary topics and making a fool out of this Government!

-Sourav Roy
a citizen of India

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