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India Pressures Internet Giants to Remove Content

India, the world’s most populous democracy, is clamping down on Internet content deemed inflammatory and calling on Internet companies, including Google and Facebook, to police such webpages. 

Last year, the Indian government implemented regulations requiring Internet companies to take down "grossly harmful" and "ethnically objectionable” content within 36 hours of being notified about such offensive material.  In response to a complaint by a Muslim religious leader, Judge Mukesh Kumar of a New Delhi district court recently issued an order for several companies to remove content, with which Google India has complied.  Britain’s Guardian news outlet reported, “…the sitting judge warned… they were responsible for content on their websites and said he could, ‘like China,’ block sites if the company failed to put its house in order.”

India has 100 million Internet users, third globally behind China and the United States.  However, that number is expected to balloon as more and more of India’s 1.2 billion people enter the online world.

By Aaron Mercer, Vice President Government Relations