The Supreme Court’s Free Speech To-Do List

Written by members of the Civil Liberties team at CCG The Supreme Court of India is often tasked with adjudicating disputes that shape the course of free speech in India. Here’s a roundup up of some key cases currently before the Supreme Court. Kamlesh Vaswani vs. Union of India A PIL petition was filed in […]

Find ways to curb Child Pornography: SC

Today in Court Room no. 4 of the Supreme Court the porn ban petition filed by Kamlesh Vaswani was taken up by the bench of Justices Dipak Mishra and Shiva Kirti Singh. Mr. Vijay Panjwani, advocate for Mr. Vaswani stated that it has been two years since the petition was filed and the Court issued […]

We are not a totalitarian state and cannot be asked to moral police: AG tells SC in the Porn Petition

The Kamlesh Vaswani matter that has asked the Court to direct the Government to block all pornography over the Internet and was used conveniently by the Government to order the disablement of over 850 website last week came up before the bench headed by the Chief Justice today. Mr. Mukul Rohatgi, the Attorney General of India represented […]

Busy Day for Free Speech in the Supreme Court: Defamation and Pornography

Subramanian Swamy v. Union of India The Supreme Court bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Prafulla Pant today heard a bunch of almost two-dozen petitions, which challenge the constitutional validity of criminal defamation (sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code). Among the more prominent ones are petitions from Mr. Subramanian Swamy, Mr. Rahul […]

IT Ministry’s Response to Questions in Rajya Sabha (includes Blocking of Content, Net Neutrality, Amendments to IT Act, Website Accessibility)

The Ministry of Communication and Information Technology recently (8th May) provided answers to a number of questions (here and here), which were raised by the parliamentarians in the Rajya Sabha. We have extracted a set of 10 questions below, that deal with a number of issues including IAMAI’s role in blocking of content, Net Neutrality, proposals for amendment […]

Cannot Block all Pornographic Material over the Internet: Centre informs the SC

The petition filed by Mr. Kamlesh Vaswani asking for a ban of all pornographic material over the internet came up for hearing today before a three judge bench headed by the Chief Justice RM Lodha. Mr. Vijay Panjwani, the advocate appearing on behalf of Mr. Vaswani started the arguments by citing examples of how countries like China […]

A Blanket Ban on Porn will violate Articles 19 & 21 of the Constitution: Government informs the Supreme Court

On 5th May, 2014 the Supreme Court bench of Justices B.S. Chauhan and and J. Chelameswar heard the petition filed by Kamlesh Vaswani, requesting the court to block all websites with pornographic content and to direct intermediaries to proactively monitor and block all pornographic content on the Internet. Additional Solicitor General (ASG), Mr. K.V. Vishwanathan […]

What’s problematic with Porn Ban?

On Monday, 5th May, a Bench of Justices B.S. Chauhan and J. Chelameswar of the Supreme Court will hear a petition filed by Kamlesh Vaswani, an Indore based lawyer, which seeks among other things, directions to the Government to frame a specific law and a national policy on pornography, to make viewing pornography an offence […]

Apex Court inquires whether Government of India departments can issue directions for blocking pornographic sites

On 21st April 2014, the petition filed by Kamlesh Vaswani asking for a ban on all pornographic websites, came up for hearing before a Supreme Court bench of Justices BS Chauhan and J Chelameswar. In its previous order the bench had asked the four government respondents (Union of India, Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Ministry of Information & […]

One Man’s Pornography is Another Man’s High Art: Internet Service Providers tell Supreme Court in the Porn Petition

On 27th January, 2014 the Supreme Court heard the petition filed by Kamlesh Vaswani requesting the court to pass an order to block websites with pornographic content in the country. The petition seeks among other things, to make viewing pornography a non-bailable and a cognizable offence. (Here and here are television discussion on the PIL, featuring the […]