Written byAnjana Raghav ·
The Supreme Court has slapped a fine of Rs. 1L each on Internet giants like Google, Facebook for failing to file their replies on the steps taken by them to block videos of sexual offenses on social sites.
The bench asked them to file an affidavit before June 15 and asked the Registry to keep the amount in a short-term fixed deposit.
A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and UU Lalit, in their order dated April 16, asked Yahoo, Facebook Ireland, Facebook India, Google India, Google Inc., Microsoft, and WhatsApp to file their replies.
"None of these entities has filed anything to show us the progress nor any of these entities is ready with any response pursuant to our aforesaid order," the bench said.
Meanwhile, the Center informed the SC that the launch of the beta version of an online cyber-crime reporting portal would be launched before July 15. "The Portal Integration with Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems would take two more months," the Center said.
"With regard to Institutional Mechanism at Central Level, the IT Ministry is having dialogue with states," the Center informed SC.
For all these developments, the apex court said that "more than sufficient time" has been taken by the Ministry of Home Affairs to complete these tasks and directed it to complete the exercise by June 30.
The SC was earlier informed the Ministry identified keywords for child pornography, rape and gang-rape content search and a list of keywords in English has been compiled and circulated to content providers for further action.
It had directed the Center to have a web portal ready by today to enable citizens lodge complaints on child sexual abuse, child pornography, and gang rape videos.
The court was hearing the matter following a letter sent in 2015 to then CJI HL Dattu by Hyderabad-based NGO Prajwala, along with two rape videos in a pen-drive.
The court had taken suo moto cognizance and asked CBI to launch a probe to apprehend culprits.
However, CBI said Internet is a "wild highway" and blocking objectionable content at source was a technical challenge.
The NGO's letter had also mooted the idea of maintaining a national sex offenders' register which should contain details of persons convicted for offenses like eve-teasing, stalking, molestation, and other sexual assaults.
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