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naavi.org has been impressing upon the community that the Information Technology bill-99 which is now an Act, is a landmark legislation in India which sets the rules for the governance of the emerging Digital Society. Ever since the Bill was placed before the Parliament in December 1999, an attempt has been made by the undersigned through this website to spread Cyber Law literacy in the country so that we can dream the formation of a prosperous, law abiding Cyber society.

Towards this end,  shortcomings of the Bill were highlighted and also brought to the notice of the Ministry of Information  Technology(MIT) from time to time. A Memorandum has also been submitted to the MIT under the banner of the forum on 30th August when a Press meet was also held in Chennai. An acknowledgement has since been received for the memorandum from the MIT and we await further information.

In the meantime on 7th September, the Semiconductor Bill has received the assent of the President.This pertains to the design of electronic circuits and Chips. A Gist and a Copy of the Bill (pdf format) is available for the interested persons to peruse. We have to await the rules  concerning the Act to assess the impact on the Cyber Society.

It has also been pointed out earlier that the Telecom Ministry has through its guidelines for Landing Stations for Submarine Cables  in India has brought in sevral provisions that endanger the "Privacy" of the honest Netizen. I request readers to peruse the article "Landing Stations or Police Stations". Privacy has not been a vibrant issue in the Indian society so far. However it is time we look at how much freedom is desirable with  the law enforcement agencies so that some unscrupulous elements donot misuse them. For example, a Company may not think that its commercial correspondence is of any value to the Cyber Police and ignore evesdropping by  the Police. But can they be sure that their competitors would not be willing to pay a price to a Policeman to divert some sensitive information to them?. We need to therefore look at the Telecom guidelines as well as the Communications Bill which will be passed in the next few months.

Yet another issue which the Cyber Society needs to be concerned is the issue of state sponsored hacking of another Courntry's sites as may be alleged in the case of attacks on Indian Websites by Pakistani agents. Protecting the Netizens who are attacked because they are the Citizens of a country should be the responsibility of the  State. This requires a Computer Emergency Response Team. This should be funded with R&D funds and should rush to help the Cyber Society against vandalism or Cyber War. Netizen's Forum would like this issue to be addressed immediately.(Refer here for more information)

I have tried to list some of the tasks ahead of the Forum. Obviously the task is huge and beyond the sole capability of the undersigned.  I would therefore request Netizens to become members of the Forum in large numbers so that we can quickly have a working body of eminent people from different parts of the country who can shulder the responsibility. naavi.org as an organisation is dedicated to the cause and would provide the virtual community infrastructure required for the purpose.

September 8, 2000

Copy of the ITA-2000
Copy of the New Rules
(P.S: Comments made hereunder are with reference to the old draft Rules) 
Advisory Committee or Secretaries Club? 
The Rules for ITA-2000 in India - Funny? Manipulative? Disheartening?..or Everything
Hurdles in becoming a Certifying Agency
Role of Adjudicating Officer-Ambiguities remain 
Sanjay Bhatia
Section 63 of the I.T Act - is it misplaced?
Sanjay Bhatia
Scope of Powers of the A.O under I.T Act.
Sanjay Bhatia
The Cyber Appellate Tribunal - Will It "Work"? 
Sanjay Bhatia
Flaws in IT Bill
Rishi Agrawal
A Few Suggestions
Inderjit Sodhi
Pramila Nesargi
Copy of Memorandum submitted