Last month Kapil Sibal, acting telecommunications minister for India, floated the proposition that social networks actively filter all content appearing on their systems. Now comes news that a judge in New Delhi also thinks web censorship appropriate. From the New York Times:
The comments of the judge, Suresh Kait, came in response to a lawsuit, filed by a private citizen in the capital, New Delhi. The suit demands that Internet companies screen content before it is posted on sites like Facebook, Google or Yahoo, that might offend the religious sentiments of Indians. A related criminal case accuses the companies — 21 in all — of violating an Indian law that applies to books, pamphlets and other material that is deemed to “deprave or corrupt.”
A trial court in New Delhi on Friday ordered that summons be served in the criminal case to officials at all 21 companies at their foreign headquarters’ addresses.
Google and Facebook refused to comment on the case, except to say they had filed a motion in the New Delhi High Court to dismiss the criminal case.
Their motion will be considered on Monday.