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Govt meets social media companies, says no plans to censor internet

Amid controversy over screening of content in the cyber world, the government on Thursday held a dialogue with Google, Facebook and Twitter seeking their views on effective usage of their platforms but asserted that there was no question of censorship of Internet.

twitter-logo PTI   New Delhi     Last Updated: January 13, 2012  | 16:53 IST

Amid controversy over screening of content in the cyber world, the government on Thursday held a dialogue with Google, Facebook and Twitter seeking their views on effective usage of their platforms but asserted that there was no question of censorship of Internet.

The government has called for an open dialogue with the social media companies, including Google, Facebook and Twitter, and various government departments, including the Ministry of External Affairs and the Department of Information and Technology, and sought opinions on how social media and e-governance can empower individuals and citizens, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said after the meeting.

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Asked whether there was any plan to formulate a mechanism to regulate Internet content, Sachin Pilot, Minister of State for Communication and IT, said, "There is no question of censorship of Internet.

"Whatever law has to me made is already in place. The Government of India is committed to abiding by what is there according to the Constitution of India which is freedom of speech and expression. We protect that with a lot of energy," he said.

Sibal said this discussion and this dialogue is about how the social media can empower the government, because under the normal processes of the government, there is always a limited dialogue with representatives of society as the means are limited.

In September this year, in an endeavour to increase the trust of citizens in the online environment and to enable the various government agencies to choose appropriate authentication mechanism, the Department of Information Technology had conceptualised the e-Pramaan framework for authentication of public services.

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