Times of India group guilty under Sections 67,67A and 67B? Will Police Act?
We have been debating how Times of India through its front page article on
February 11, in its print editions took up promoting and advertising
pornography on Internet through the savitabhabhi.com (since banned by
Government of India) and its clone which is now in operation.
We have raised the issue of jounalistic ethics not only
because the promotion of savitabhabhi.com is promotion of pornography, but also
because it was in defiance of the current Government ban on Savitabhabhi.com.
Additionally, the article contained false and misleading statements about ITA
2008, ( Information Technology Act 2000 as amended by the Information
Technology Amendment Act 2008 effective from October 27, 2009), arguing that
the Government of India did not have the powers to block websites such as
The article tried to argue that the word “Public Order”
should only mean “riot” kind of situations and violation of an existing law of
the land cannot be construed as disturbing “Public Order”.
The article has been successful in creating a perception
that ITA 2008 does not have the powers to block Internet pornography in India
and has created a confusion even in the law enforcement circles by sheer weight
of the circulation of TOI and the misplaced credibility on publication
and the vanishing concept called “Journalistic Ethics”.
In its continued bid to challenge the authorities, TOI group
carried sexually explicit pictures in its website such as the following
1. Savita Bhabhi can speak 10 languages : http://infotech.indiatimes.com/quickiearticleshow/556022.cms
3.It’s Savita Bhabhi time again?: http://infotech.indiatimes.com/quickiearticleshow/5560246.cms
These pages contain pictures and text from the banned site
which are lascivious, appeals to the prurient interests and tends to deprave
and corrupt the minds of persons who are likely to see it. (The pages are
available even for minors) which are sufficient to invoke Section 67 and 67A of
ITA 2008. Further, a few of the pictures depict minors engaged in sexually
explicit acts which is good enough to invoke section 67B of ITA 2008.
Further the group has been indulging in publishing,
transmitting and promoting obscenity in electronic form repeatedly and
therefore qualify for bing accused of a repeated offence under all the three
TOI has already been indicted by Press Council http://presscouncil.nic.in/Decisions/decision05/38.htm once
on the grounds of peddling obscenity in violation of journalistic ethics and
therefore the current incident must qualify as a repeated offence.
Now the offences committed are “Cognizable Offences” and
this forum has brought it to the notice of the public and therefore the notice
of the law enforcement. Additionally, Naavi.org has already sent a specific
complaint to CERT IN and the Secretary of MCIT with copies of the above web
pages. Hence the law enforcement cannot deny knowledge of the offence. They are
therefore bound to initiate action in the spirit in which the law expects them
to do. I hope they would act accordingly.
Further it can be noted that the articles on
savitabhabhi.com appearing in the above webpages carry advertisements of many
entities such as Tech Mabindra, Monsterindia.com, kohler.co.in,
itbusinessedge.com, SAS.com, y-jesus.com , edencourt.in, logmein.com,
ramcoondemand.com, etc. Probably the advertisements are served from an ad
server and all advertisers in TOI group may find their ads on these pages and
will be financing the promotion of the banned savitabhabhi.com. They shall be
guilty of the same offences as TOI is accused of under the vicarious liability
provisions for having financed an ellegal activity. It is necessary for such
companies to review their ad contract and put a bar on their advertisements
being served in such illegal content pages.
I hope that advertising agencies who are handling the
advertisement contracts of these companies realize that they too will be
responsible for the offence and will be indemnifying their client companies for
any liabilities that may arise.
I suggest that some public spirited advocates should explore
possibilities of seeking legal remedy through PILs perhaps in the Supreme
February 14, 2010
What Do We Do with Obscenity in Times of India?
Govt Can Ban Porn websites for obscenity
Times of India.. Is it Set to
Mislead the Public on Savita Bhabhi Issue?
Govt Cannot Ban Porn Websites for Obscenity... TOI
Boys who watch pornography indulge in casual sex .. a study TOI
Petition against TOI at petition.com
Adult content make kids sexually active
Urgent need to ban porn
websites: CJI Balakrishnan
War on Savitabhabhi.com needs to be continued
Govt Bans Popular Toon Porn Site Savitabhabhi.com; Mounting Concern Over
Times Promoting Obscenity August 3, 2001
Why Times of
India is Wrong..Oct 19,2007
Please do not try to manipulate public opinion with planted stories..Oct
Recipe for Killing Journalistic Ethics..Oct 21,2007
Parliamentary Committee Report on ITA 2006 ..analysed..
D.Venkatesh Pastay, Advocate...Nov
Secularists all set to play a fraud on the society, Oct 31,2006
Comments are Welcome at