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Suspension of Internet Services UPSC NOTE

 


Suspension of Internet Services

  • Internet shutdowns are a means to wipe out online communication.

  • The shutdowns were ordered on various accounts including protests, conflict and elections.

Impacts

  • Economic losses

  • Social Disruptions

  • Disrupt educational activities

  • Disrupt e-commerce-related activities



Who Governs Internet Shutdowns in India?

  • Internet shutdown orders are governed under the Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency or Public Safety) Rules, 2017, under the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885.

  • The 2017 Rules provide for temporary shutdown of telecom services in a region on grounds of public emergency and give senior bureaucrats from the Home Ministry at the central and state levels the power to order shutdowns.

  • The 1885 Act empowers the central government to regulate various types of telecom services including internet services and grant licenses for them.




Is it against freedom speech and other fundamental rights?

  • The Supreme Court, in Anuradha Bhasin vs Union of India (2020), had held that an indefinite suspension of Internet services was in contravention to the law as freedom of speech and the freedom to carry out commercial work using the Internet was a fundamental right. 

  • It also held that such suspensions should adhere to the “principle of proportionality and must not extend beyond necessary duration”.

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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Suspension of Internet Services UPSC NOTE
Suspension of Internet Services UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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