Mumbai: In response to a demand made by the Indian Union Muslim League, the government has allegedly blocked access to a website accused of peddling a pornographic video called ‘Sex Life Of The Prophet’. But given that the hydraheaded internet is almost impossible to police, the offending DVD is still easily available at other leading adult internet DVD stores. One site even offers a discount if purchased along with another adult movie-bought individually, it costs just $17 (Rs 750).
Classified as an adult film, the DVD claims to be based on the ‘Sex Life, Sex after Death, and the Re-Birth of the Prophet Muhammad’. If one is to judge by the cover, however, the fare on offer is less than tame-a tall bare-chested man in loose Turkish trousers stands with his hands on his hips while a woman kneels at his feet in a scene that could be out of any Arabian Nights story. Past efforts at internet censorship by the Mumbai police and the Indian government haven’t met with much success either. For example, on April 28, 2004, a letter from Mumbai’s commissioner of police was despatched to all Internet Service Providers (ISP) in the city directing that access toÂ www.hinduunity.orgÂ be blocked immediately for inflaming Hindu sentiment. Most complied, but the site continues to flourish.
Websites in India are blocked by the New Delhi-based Computer Emergency Response Team-India (CERT-IN. CERT acts on requests made by law-enforcing agencies across the country. It was CERT that was behind the ham-handed move to restrict access to a yahoo chat group Kynhun, started by a group of Meghalayans, which was charged with “promoting anti-national news and containing material against Indian & Meghalaya Governments.”