In a U-turn, the Centre today told the Supreme Court that it was withdrawing its notification proposing to create a social media hub, which some have alleged could become a tool to monitor online activities of citizens.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra considered the submission of Attorney General K K Venugopal, appearing for the Centre, that the impugned notification was being withdrawn, and disposed off petitions challenging it.
Venugopal told the bench, comprising justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, the social media policy would be reviewed completely by the government. The bench was hearing a petition filed by TMC MLA Mahua Moitra alleging that the Centre’s social media hub policy was to be used as a tool to monitor social media activities of the citizens and has sought quashing of the same.
The apex court, while agreeing to hear the plea on July 13, had asked the government whether its move to create such a hub was to tap people’s WhatsApp messages, and observed that it will be like creating a “surveillance state”. — PTI
Creating such kind of environment of fear is totally against democratic principles. BJP dislikes free media as they do not want anything negative published against them.
Ashok GehlotVerified account @ashokgehlot51
There is worst kind of
#PressCensorship in the country since BJP has come to power. Ruling party has been stifling press freedom n pressuring media group owners to take action against any journalist that dares to publish anything against BJP leaders.
On Wednesday, ABP News channels management announced the resignation of its editor-in-chief, Milind Khandekar. This announcement was followed soon by the departure of Punya Prasoon Bajpai, anchor of the popular nightly show, Master Stroke.
Congress today alleged in the Lok Sabha that a senior executive of a prominent news channel and two other staffers had recently quit due to pressure from the government for airing stories critical of the ruling establishment.
Strongly refuting the charge, Information and Broadcasting Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said the government has nothing to do with the internal developments of the channel and the opposition was raising the matter as it has no issues to flag in the House.
“No showcause notice was served on the channel when it was running wrong news. The government has nothing to do with it (the resignations)…The TRP (rating point) of the channel is going down,” Rathore said.
Though Kharge named the channel and the executive who had quit, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the name of the private entity and its employees would not go on record.
Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Kharge alleged that the senior executive, who had served in the channel for 14 years, and the two other employees, were forced to quit following government pressure after it carried out a “reality check” on a claim by a woman farmer from Chhattisgarh during an interaction with Prime Minister Narendra Modi that her farm income had doubled.
“It is unfortunate that the media is being targeted for doing its duty, for carrying out reality checks on the government’s claim. The media is being intimidated. The Managing Editor (of the channel) was told to go. Two anchors of the channel were also asked to go,” the leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha alleged. — PTI