“Status Quo” is most comfortable for some of the tech companies as regards Intermediary guidelines is what comes out of the 609 page collection of public comments.
There are a total of 141 comments which are listed in the list given below.
Index of Suggestions received as Public Comments
|2||All India Professional Congress||Political||4-6|
|5||Freedom Publishers Union||NGO-Foreign||20|
|7||JUUL-LABS||Vaping Product Company-Foreign||29-33|
|8||Asia Internet Coalition||NGO-Foreign||34-42|
|9||ITU-APT Foundation of India||NGO-India||43-47|
|12||Banana IP||Legal Firm||60-75|
|13||The Indian Music Industry||Industry-Music||76-81|
|15||Digital Empowerment Foundation||NGO-India||86-90|
|16||Information Technology Industry Council||Industry-IT-Global||91-94|
|18||Election Commission of India||Government||105-106|
|19||Computer & Communications Industry Association||Industry-Foreign||107-112|
|21||Internet Service Providers Association of India||Industry Association-IT-India||117-120|
|23||Asia Cloud Computing Assocaition||Industry-IT-Global||142-148|
|24||Broad Band India Forum||Industry-IT-India||149-154|
|28||IAMAI-Internet and Mobile Association of India||Industry-IT-India||187-192|
|29||CII-Confederation of Indian Industry||Industry-India||193-203|
|30||BSA-The Software Alliance||Industry-Global||204-206|
|31||Harsheet Yogesh Shaah||Individual-Cyber Expert||207-210|
|32||Internet Freedom Foundation||NGO-India||211-224|
|33||The Bachchao Project||NGO-India||225-228|
|37||Center for Internet Society (CIS)||NGO-India||246-271|
|38||National Institute of Public Finance & Policy||NGO-India||272-299|
|40||Global Network Initiative||NGO-Global||301-304|
|41||India Internet Foundation||NGO-India||305-306|
|44||Heart Care Foundation of India||NGO-Health Care||346-349|
|46||Free Software Movement of India||NGO-India||368-380|
|47||Dr Joan Barata Mir-CIS (USA)||Individual- Professor-Law||381-383|
|50||AWS (Amazon Web Services)||Industry-IT-Global||396-405|
|52||US India Business Council||Industry-Global||412-413|
|59||IRA Law||Law Firm||458-471|
|61||Center for Communication Governance||NGO-India||479-497|
|63||Association of Vapers India||Industry-India||503-515|
|66||Bingi Vivek Varun||Individual||523-524|
|73||Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry||Industry-India||534-539|
(Please note that the .Page numbers are from a down loaded document. One the website there will be a difference of page numbers by one page since numbering starts from the second page. Also, since in some cases the identity of the persons was not visible, they have been left blank If any body can claim the particular comment, they can keep Naavi informed so that this index can be updated.)
Who all have provided comments
It may be noted that there are a number of foreign companies, NGOs and even individuals who have provided their comments.
As could be expected, several NGOs who are active in promoting human rights on the Internet have provided their views.
Since Naavi’s views were already contained in FDPPI’s views, no separate submission was made by either Naavi individually or from Cyber Law College or Naavi.org.
What is surprising is that most of the Premier Law Colleges including the NLSUI, NALSAR etc have not contributed their thoughts. IIIT Bangalore is however one of the academic institutions that has submitted its views.
FINTECH industry as well as the E Commerce, industry are conspicuous by its absence in the list of contributors.
There is some thoughts contributed from the health care sector particularly regarding the part referring to smoking, alcohol and Narcotics promotion on Internet.
Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry, FICCI, AMCHAM and CII are industry associations which have contributed their thoughts. US India Business Council has also provided its views.
Election Commission of India is the Government body which has submitted its views.
Number of law firms which have submitted their views are few. Banana IP, IRA Law, Samvad partners are a few who can be identified. There are a few individual lawyers who have submitted their views. Most of the persons who promote themselves as “Cyber Lawyers” have not taken the trouble of providing their considered views. The habitual PIL lawyers who raise the Constitutional rights at the drop of a hat have also failed to record their views at this stage.
Rajeev Chandrashekar as an MP has submitted his views while comments have also been made from the Congress Party in the name of “All India Professional Congress”.
IBM, Wipro, JIo, XIAOMI, AWS, Mozilla, are the noticeable names from the tech industry.
ISPs and MSPs are represented through their associations. Few Policy research organizations have provided their views.
NASSCOM’s views are provided through DSCI.
Overall, it is heartening to note that so many people have taken the interest in submitting their views, though several more should have also contributed. At least this indicates the wide interest being shown on Indian law making process across the world.
Negative Comments predominant
It is unfortunate to note that majority of comments are “Negative” comments and include those which keep saying, more consultation is required etc. These indicate that people are happy with policy paralysis and no action being taken rather than some action.
Many of the suggestions made also indicate lack of understanding of the context in which this notification has to be placed as an administrative notification under the statute which became effective in 2009 itself.
Shreya Singhal Judgement which was a faulty judgement with a wrong interpretation of “Messaging” as “Publication” and Puttaswamy Judgement which was related to “Information Privacy” without defining what is “Privacy” have been extensively quoted by many.
Further Comments to Follow
It is easy to say “Don’t Do this or that”. But it is difficult to say “What should be done”. We therefore need to ignore most of the negative comments and focus on a few which contain some suggestions. It is only from those comments that the Government would be able to bring some changes that would try to tackle the issue of “Fake News” and “Frauds through Intermediaries”.
We shall try to focus on such positive comments in our subsequent articles though it may be necessary to comment on a few others in the passing.