The Supreme Court agreed to hear the objections of Yahoo, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and WhatsApp to the recommendations of the Committee set up by the Court to ensure that videos depicting gang rape, child pornography and rape should not be made available to the general public.
The Committee was set up in March with Dr. Ajay Kumar, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Information and Technology as the head of the Committee and also includes Civil Servants along with Aparna Bhatt, counsel for the petitioner, N.S.Nappinai, Amicus Curiae, Sidharth Luthra (Facebook-Ireland’s counsel), and representatives of other stake-holders.
Dr. Kumar had informed on September 4, hat the entities that had participated in the meetings had tentatively objected to the report being placed in the public domain.
The bench had also asked the participating entities i.e. Yahoo, Facebook, Google, Google India, Microsoft, and WhatsApp to place an affidavit with the number of complaints that they have received from India about objectionable contents concerning child pornography and rape and gang rape, for the years 2016 and 2017 (from 1.1.17 to 31.8.17), and the action taken on those complaints. This would be in addition to any suo moto action that the entities had taken even without any complaint having been received from anybody in India.
The bench including Justice Madan B.Lokur and Justice Uday Umesh Lalit will have its in camera, as requested by the parties, at 2 p.m. on October 23.