Concerned by the recurring Internet shutdowns imposed by states across India, we, along with a group of citizens and organizations, sent letters to the Chief Ministers of all states that have witnessed shutdowns in the past, requesting that immediate action be taken to curb this unjustifiable practice. Making note of the significant human rights deprivations and socio-economic costs that come with frequently preventing residents of entire states and regions from accessing the Internet, the letter urged the Chief Ministers of affected states to take necessary steps towards ensuring that any restrictions on communications imposed in the interest of maintaining law and order follow established legal protocol under the Information Technology Act, 2000, and that states refrain from imposing blanket Internet shutdowns under any circumstance.
The full text of the respective letters are available at these links:
- Jammu and Kashmir
- Uttar Pradesh
- Arunachal Pradesh
Note: We will be re-sending these letters to the CMOs in a few weeks’ time with a larger pool of organizational/individual endorsements. We request all who wish to voice their support for this initiative to send in a line of endorsement of any/all of the above letters to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please be sure to state your full name and designation as applicable in your email, and feel free to suggest any changes you would like to see in the current text of the letters.