Sunday, May 18, 2008
Expressindia » Story

Orkut again, this time target is Sonia

Font Size -

Express news service

Posted online: Friday , December 21, 2007 at 12:00:00
Updated: Thursday , December 20, 2007 at 11:33:57

Pune, December 20 Barely a month after the Pune police blocked an Orkut community for its “objectionable and disparaging” comments on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, a few new controversial ‘hate’ communities against Congress president Sonia Gandhi have elicited political ire, promising to keep the police on their toes.

A handful of “We hate Sonia Gandhi” communities, filled with derogatory statements about her drove agitated members of the Pune City Youth Congress to approach deputy commissioner of police (cyber, narcotics) Sunil Phulari, on Wednesday evening, demanding immediate action. Based on a complaint filed by city Youth Congress vice president Amol Bhokare, the case was referred to the Deccan police, who registered a case under Indian Penal Code section 292 pertaining to printing of obscene content and also applied section 67 of the IT Act relating to publishing of information which is obscene in electronic form.

Speaking to the media about the case, DCP Phulari described it as ‘sensitive’ as it involved a prominent national, political symbol. “The communities have defamatory and derogatory material directed at the Gandhi-Nehru family, especially directed at Sonia Gandhi and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru,” said Phulari. “The police have notified Google Corporation, Orkut’s parent website, about the communities and are currently in the process of tracing the source code of the community. They are asking Google to remove the communities.

The ‘hate’ communities comprised anti-Nehru and Gandhi postings like “All those people who hate Mr. J.Nehru, please join here” and “messages to Sonia to quit India.” “Some of our volunteers came across these sites and we approached the police urging them to act against the creators immediately. We registered a complaint and sought removal of the communities,” said former City Congress chief, Mohan Joshi. “Be it the Shivaji Maharaj case or the present one, we will protest against any material that is defamatory to our national figures. Being Gandhian in principle, we decided to complain before protesting, but we expect prompt action soon,” he added.

DCP Phulari sais an investigation was underway and the technical data had to be checked. “Moreover, websites, international search engines, ISPs were not under the direct control of the police,” he said adding that this was the third case involving Orkut, that had been registered since November 2006.

Asked if this will provoke a law and order situation, the additonal commissioner of police said police stations have been told to remain alert. “We are awaiting details from Google,” he said adding that further action will be taken on the basis of the data received.

No comments: