Digital technology was once a luxury reserved for a privileged few. Today, it is ubiquitous. In urban areas, digital platforms have insinuated themselves into our way of life that they are often a reliable substitute for existing infrastructure. In rural areas that until recently had little to no access to basic infrastructure, they have become the lifeline that connects people and places which the system used to previously ignore. We’ve reached a point where these technologies aren’t so much a nice-to-have, but an essential part of the infrastructure on which our national growth depends.
But with this, comes the Internet shut down in India.
The government has long operated on the belief that in a national security emergency if it shuts down the internet in the affected area, it will prevent perpetrators of dangerous and illegal acts from communicating with each other and tamp down rumours that are often more de-stabilizing than the threatening incidents themselves.
Under Indian laws, the government can direct telecom companies to shut down services or take down sites, among other things.
The internet has been shut down 95 times in India so far this year, according to the Internet Shutdown Tracker, a portal which tracks such incidents across the country.
Authorities usually order internet providers to suspend services, citing public order reasons. Under Indian laws, the government can direct telecom companies to shut down services or take down sites, among other things.
As protests over a controversial citizenship law rage across India, authorities resorted to shutting down the internet in cities where demonstrators flooded the streets. These are the latest shutdowns in a country which has seen the highest number of internet blocks in the world so far this year.
For nearly seven months, Kashmir has weathered the longest-running internet shutdown in any democracy
Officials have said that it is necessary to "keep the peace" in the region. But it's not just this year that India has led the way in blocking off access to the net.
It also saw the world's highest number of shutdowns in 2018 with 134 reported incidents.
Is it the only option left with the Government?
Spoken by: Ruchi Roy (Founder Ek Aagaaz)
DOP: Saket Wahane
Researched & Directed by: Taran Arora
Post Production: Pulkit Chowbe
Produced by: Kshitij Sheetak
Backed by: Shoot Guru ( instagram.com/shootguru )