Town Hall, 21st April 2012, Saturday, Evening 5.00 p.m
Students from various Engineering Colleges will participate and talk
It is about our basic democratic right of free speech. It is about police not knocking on our doors for forwarding emails. It is about what you and I can put up on our blogs without worrying whether it hurts the rich and the powerful
We support free speech, free knowledge and free software
Organised by : Free Software Movement Karnataka, Software Freedom Law Center , Kannada Bloggers, friendsofinternet, Website : fsmk.org , contact : [email protected], 9591042333, Vignesh : 9535321976
Government has enacted laws that give it a free pass to censor our Facebook posts, listen to every Skype conversation we have, monitor our tweets or blogs oraccess private photographs and documents we store online, or track our location using our mobile phones or surveil all of your online activity. We want to tell our government that they cannot use vaguely defined laws and loopholes to take away our freedom of speech and expression.
On 11th April 2011, the Government notified the new Information Technology (Intermediaries Guidelines) Rules, 2011 prescribing various guiding principles to be observed by all internet related companies. These rules will
1. Lead to a clamp down on the freedom of speech and expression enshrined in the Constitution of India by providing for a system of censorship / self-censorship by private parties;
2. Adversely affect the right to privacy of citizens by allowing Government agencies to access their information;
3. Will severely hamper the growth of internet penetration in India, and consequently lead to a slowdown of economic growth;
4. Limit the growth of various IT related industries and services (in particular cyber cafes, search engines and bloggers).
In addition, mandatory data retention would force the Internet Service Provider to create vast and expensive new databases of sensitive information about an individual. That information would then be available to the government, in secret and without any court oversight.
Sh. P. Rajeev , Hon’ble Member of the Rajya sabha has moved an annulment motion to get these rules abolished and the motion has been admitted and is expected to come up in this budget session . The Bangalore MP Rajeev Chandrashekar has spoken in Parliament in support , the text of which is available at the end of this note. Its also interesting to note that a professor of chemistry of the Jadavpur University was arrested recently along with his neighbour for allegedly posting a cartoon on a popular social networking site and forwarding emails, cases were booked under the IT ACT as well.
The Government notified this on April 13, 2011 the Information Technology (Intermediaries guidelines) Rules, 2011 prescribing guidelines to be observed by the intermediaries. The rules were issued in exercise of the powers conferred by clause (zg) of subsection (2) of section 87 read with sub-section (2) of section 79 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 (Act 21 of 2000). The provisions of the new rules are unconstitutional as they affect the right to freedom of speech and expression as well as right to privacy of citizens, are arbitrary being violative of Art. 14 of the Constitution of India and are ultra vires of the parent act.
There is an internet petition you can sign below.