Atanu Dey On India's Development

Blog Censoring by the Goverment of India

“Somebody must have asked for some sites to be blocked. What is your problem?”

I can just hear the derision in that question. That is what Shivam Vij was told by Dr Gulshan Rai, director of CERT-IN, which is the organization which is authorized to issue orders to ISPs. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) of the Government of India asked that certain domains be blocked (but does not reveal exactly which though it is clear that the list includes *.blogspot.com, *.typepad.com and geocities.com/* .)

Like the imperial rulers they are, they did not bother to explain why this attempt at censorship. I write “attempt” because on the internet, you really cannot censor anything. The net treats it like it were the failure of a link and routes traffic around the failed link, as anyone with even a rudimentary understanding of the internet knows.

It is remarkable that even so late in the day the clueless retards that dictate policy have not figured out that India is a so-called democracy and that the first pre-requisite of giving people a vote is that they be competent and if they are competent enough to vote, then they should be competent enough to exercise their freedom of expression. The schizophrenic attitude — treating citizens as if they are incompetent idiots on the one hand, while handing them the “vote” — is inexplicable at first glance.

Then one realizes that it makes sense in the context of Indian democracy. The voters are uninformed and their uninformed vote is what keeps the retards in power. If the voters were to ever become informed, they would vote the retards (sorry for repeating that word, but it is the most appropriate) out of power.

What else can I say except that if your government decides what you are allowed to read and what you are allowed to say, then you might be a Third World country.

  • sarat

    Govt’s exlanation for blocking these sites is that the terrorists might use it to communicate with their modules. Should i laugh or should i lament at their silliness?

  • Shibani

    I completely agree with your sentiments…What astounds me the most about this whole blog censorship issue is exactly how blogs help perpetrate terrorism(the ostensible reason for shutting down blogs)…this isn’t the first time “authorities” have goofed by picking a totally innocent subject and attaching ominous overtones to it…it seems completely arbit

  • Vikram

    From a news report

    “Two sources, one inside the Government of India and the other kind of inside/outside have confirmed to the Mutiny, that ISPs are being instructed to ‘control’ access to blogspot. It seems that some blogs are being used by some terror units (read SIMI) to communicate. ”

    In some late night news addition (sic), it is suspected by the Indian government that some terror units had used mobile phones to co-ordinate the attack. Therefore the DoT has issued a standing order to block all cell phone communications effective immediately. Further news has it that future censorship orders may be issued for land lines, as well as the postal system. This is being done to ensure the safety of the Indian public.

  • http://flawedskull.spaces.msn.com Tushar Saxena

    Absolutely despicable. Everyday I think of ways I can help our economy and solve some problems once my career gets going. I dream about coming back to India after studying here in the US. With headlines like these, I seriously feel sick and helpless. The despair and hopelessness I feel must be shared by numerous other Indians who want to transform this lunacy.
    But seriously….how much rapine of one’s nation can one tolerate?!?!?

    SICKENING

  • http://www.ms.unimelb.edu.au/~gadde/ gaddeswarup
  • http://www.sabhlokcity.com Sukrit

    It’s not just that the voters are uninformed — you do not need a great deal of knowledge to figure out when your government is taking you for a ride — it’s that whoever they vote for, they get a politician of the worst order. To fix that India needs electoral reform. That is, more political scientists and less economists. :-)

    Trackback

  • http://apratyaksh.blogspot.com Abhinav Goyal

    Atanu,

    Two things

    1. Completely agree with your conclusion that the retards want to keep power and hence exercise control over people’s freedom of expression

    2. Your conclusion “if your government decides what you are allowed to read and what you are allowed to say, then you might be a Third World country” is true merely because it is a probabilistic statement.

    ALL the governments around the world suppress distribution of information and most of the countries are “Third World”. Thus, if you pick a country where the government suppresses information, the probability that you picked one of the “Third World” ones is very high.

    - Abhinav

  • Venkat Ramanan

    “Somebody must have asked for some sites to be blocked. What is your problem?”

    SICK!! But, What more do we expect from a Babu who ever wants to keep his master happy??

  • http://barbarindians.blogspot.com Barbarindian

    Could we please be honest and say blog censorship by Congress?

    It is time we face the truth. When Yahoo groups were banned for a few weeks, some of the responses read:

    Censorship by Hindu Fascists etc.

    Now we have a mysterious entity called the “government” banning blogs.

    The poor “babu” has little to do with the banning.

  • http://forestlaw.blogspot.com Amit Kulkarni

    Abhinav,

    I concur. By Atanu’s definition, I hardly think there would be any first-world/developed countries.

    Atanu,

    I know you must have figured it out by now if any country is truly democratic. Why and how do you expect some lofty standard from humble Indians? In a jungle, the strongest exert their brute strength, and the weak cower. Please let us have some realistic expectations, eh? Practical intellectualism rather than armchair intellectualism?

    :)

  • http://apratyaksh.blogspot.com Abhinav Goyal

    Amit,

    Atanu, very cleverly, uses “might be” – not “is”. :)

    Secondly, I have two takes on your comments as well

    1. Just because there is no openness in the rest of the world doesn’t mean India should not aspire to openness. Lofty ideal, yes, but one must aim for it because tht is the only way we (or any other nation for that matter) can ever be a true democracy.

    2. Humble Indians? Since when did Indians become humble? Of all the people I have met, Indians are the least humble – why, they get excited when they see their names/photos printed in college magazines.

    - Abhinav

  • http://apratyaksh.blogspot.com Abhinav Goyal

    “are”, not “is” in the previous post.

    Grammatical error by this humble soul. :)

  • Pingback: …My heart’s in Accra » Disagreements and thoughts over India’s blog block

  • http://forestlaw.blogspot.com Amit Kulkarni

    Abhinav,

    The white wolf is always persecuted in a pack of black wolves. There is no democracy right now in the world, and I am tired of hearing this idealistic rigmarole on news.

    Humble was a joke in the context of ‘lofty standards’ :)

  • http://blog.taragana.com/ Angsuman Chakraborty

    > Could we please be honest and say blog censorship by Congress?

    Sure. Let’s say blog censorship by Congress of anti-Muslim sites and pro-Hindu sites to please Muslims. Censorship on anti-Sonia site to appease Sonia. Sounds about right?

  • http://blog.taragana.com/ Angsuman Chakraborty

    > clueless retards
    Now you are being polite.

  • http://apratyaksh.blogspot.com Abhinav Goyal

    Amit,

    I can understand where you are coming from. It is true that democracy, as it is defined to be, is purely a work of fiction – as fictional as Sherlock Holmes.

    But therein lies the quandary. Do you think that we should formally renounce the idea of democracy claiming that it doesnt work/exist and move full-scale towards an anarchy with militias and gangs – the kind of situation that exists in Bihar, Somalia, Iraq and other places in the world?

    Should we be like the US (a country that pretends to be a democratic and pro-democratic but where democracy exists only as a creation of their propaganda machine – the news media and Hollywood)? In fact, we are almost there …

    Which way do you think India should go? Democracy is an idealistic notion, I agree. What is the other option though? A benevolent dictatorship? Or an Idi-Amin style one? Or militias and fractions?

    I for one feel that a benevolent autocrat is the best solution for India but can’t think of one person on this whole planet who can fill that post.

    In absence of a better system, all one can do is work towards the best solution available which (unfortunately or fortunately) happens to be a democracy.

    And if one wants democracy to work, then one must fight to ensure that democratic principles are followed by all those who claim to be a part of that democracy …

  • Atul Thakker

    Some suggestions to Indian government:
    1. There are many accidents on road because of Vehicle Drivings. Ban the vehicles across India.
    2. There are many food related health issues. Ban Eating.
    3. People can plan terrorist attacts over phones. Ban phones.
    4. Roads develop potholes because of rain. Ban Raining.
    5. Doctors also cure criminals. Ban doctors.
    6. There are many people living with bad intentions. Ban LIVING. All must be dead.

    For every problem, find a root cause and kill it. I think Indian Government is going perfectly on right track. All must agree.

  • http://www.chakpak.com/MovieDetailAction-Eklavya-.do?movieId=18530 Eklavya

    this seems to be an issue with ISPS than with GOI…