Name: India Censors the Web

Date:  1995 - 2005

Location:  Asia

SubjectPolitical/Economic/Social Opinion , Racial/Ethnic , Nudity

MediumPublic Speech , Electronic Media , Personal Opinion

Artist: Web designers.

Confronting Bodies: Information Technology division of the Government of India.

Date of Action: August 1, 2003.

Specific Location: Mumbai, India.

Description of Artwork: Websites deemed by the Indian government to promot hate, slander, defamation, gambliiing, racism, violence, terrorism, pornography, child pornography, and violent sex.

Description of Incident: The Indian government passed a law enabling it sweeping authorization to police the internet. The order- No. GSR629(E)- equates the monitoring of the internet with balancing the flow of information and specifically denies any allegation of censorship. However, the law grants many agencies such as teh state home departments, the courts, police etc. to submit complaints regarding any website to an Information Technology department of the government, which then makes a spot decision to block out the site. There is no hearing process for the web designer, and the Information Technology department's decision is final.

Results of Incident: The law is currently in place and the screening process is ongoing.

Source: The Times of India Online (

Submitted By: Peter Silverman, NCAC

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