Police should catch rioters, not ban Orkut

On the heels of my last post about why India should NOT ban Orkut, comes this con­fir­ma­tion from the Hin­dus­tan Times:

Maha­rash­tra police want restric­tions on Orkut

An attack by the Shiv Sena on cyber cafés in a sub­urb on Mumbai’s east­ern fringes last week has prompt­ed the state and Cen­tral gov­ern­ments to mull a ban on Orkut, a pop­u­lar social-net­work­ing site oper­at­ed by the Inter­net com­pa­ny Google.

On Fri­day, the Indi­an Com­put­er Emer­gency Response Team in New Del­hi will decide if it should accept a report sent to it by the Thane police rec­om­mend­ing restric­tions across India on Orkut, designed in Jan­u­ary 2004 by Turk­ish soft­ware engi­neer Orkut Buyukkok­ten.

The Team was formed in 2003 under the Infor­ma­tion Tech­nol­o­gy Act by the Cen­tral Min­istry of Infor­ma­tion and Tech­nol­o­gy to reg­u­late online con­tent. It can block web­sites it deems offen­sive.

Con­troller for Cer­ti­fi­ca­tion Dr N Vijaya­ditya told HT: “We have to study the police report before we come to a con­clu­sion.”

And this:

Thane Deputy Com­mis­sion­er of Police Anup Kumar Singh said: “While we await a report from the agency, cyber café own­ers in the region have been asked to request cus­tomers to refrain from using the web­site.”

This is like telling a kid “You can open the refrig­er­a­tor if you like, but I request you not to eat the can­dy that’s kept in the upper shelf of the door”!

Why doesn’t the police take any action against the riot­ers, who caused destruc­tion of pri­vate prop­er­ty, harassed cyber cafe own­ers, and thus broke the law?

I ulti­mate­ly have faith in our judi­cia­ry who will nev­er let a ban on Orkut pre­vail in India. But the brazen­ness of the police is still shock­ing.

This entry was posted in culture, India, politics and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.