July 16, 2006

The Ghost of Lord Lytton is Still Alive in India

The Ghost of Lord Lytton is still alive in India.

Somewhere on July 13, 2006, many blogs were blocked in India. All the blogs which contained the term "blogspot" or "typepad" in their addresses did not open. They are not accessible till this day. As per the subdued whisper among the bloggers in India, the sites of the blogs had been blocked on the orders of ‘the ministry’. The users of Tata Indicom ISP are able to access it. However, the users of Reliance, Spectranet and MTNL can not access their sites. The knowledgeable people have suggested a way out which was being used by Pakistan bloggers. One can reach his/her blog through proxy server and one of the suggested site for access is www.hidemyass.com. Even the Pakistan crusaders have their solution and one can use that also. ( Through dependable sources)

I do not go into the reasons and causes of this ‘Irish Coercion Act 1870’ activity. I do not find all the people in that All India Service cadre as bright chaps. They always adopt the worst and funniest responses to the crisis (7/11 and Zero Tolerance boosting). And the worst is that lot (politicians) which runs government as the elected members. I do not find complaints against them genuine because they are elected representatives and it is ‘we the people of India’ who are bound to suffer because of our exalted faith in ourselves wherein we believe we know better than everyone else. ‘All knowledge is there in Vedas mentality’ pervades without actually knowing what is there in Vedas. Even if some of us who know something about it, we have learnt it from the writings of the English scholars of western countries.

The episode of blocking of blogs has shattered my plans on writing on blogs. Earlier, it was the erratic supply of electricity which was the major problem. Then there was problem of broken roads which reduces your movement around the city and between the cities. The problem of unsupportive attitude of library people is always there and I have in my possession some emails which contain complaints against such attitudes. Now, some great great grand ****** son of Lytton has blocked the blogs because he might have thought that it was an intelligent way of undertaking an investigation.

The blocking of blogs has all the ingredients of Lytton Press act.

Lytton was the author of great tragedy of the Second Afghan War. He was strongly and ferociously condemned by the Indians. Lytton reacted like a mentally sick person. On March 13, 1878, he sent a telegram to the Secretary of State for India requesting to permit through reply telegram to allow him to issue an executive order on the lines of the Irish Coercion act of 1870. He got the sanction for the bill the next day that was March 14, 1878. Within the couple hours from receiving the permission, he issued the law called the Vernacular Press Act. It was nick named as "The Gagging Act" by the Indian people. It is on record in a statement of S. N. Banerjea, that "Within less than fifteen months, the vernacular press all over India, save that of Madra, was muzzled. ( V. D. Mahajan, Modern Indian History from 1707 and the Present Day; 1995; S. Chand and Company Ltd.; New Delhi. Pp. (487-499)

There was an ingredient of ‘Rang De Basanti’ in the sequel to the Gagging Act which the present day administrators may not know. It is believed and emphasized by many historians that it was the activity which followed this act, that laid the action plan of future protest movements that won freedom for India. It was undertaken in the following manner. A demonstration (first of its kind in the history of India) was organized in Calcutta in the Town Hall to discuss the Gagging Act. The activity continued through different public bodies and Press. The most interesting act was performed by Amrita Bazar Patrika of Sisir Kumar Ghosh and Motilal Ghosh. The act was against the Press in regional languages. When the act came into force on March 14, 1878, Ghosh converted it into an English Newspaper. (Bipin Chandra and others; India’s Struggle For Independence 1857-1947; Penguin Books India (P) Ltd. New Delhi; pp. 105). This act of Amrita Bazar Patrika is now played by Bloggers by accessing their site from proxy servers and for blogspot sites they are getting assistance from Pakistan bloggers who beat their government for similar bans.

Now these dates 13 and 14 are against the freedom of speech fundamental rights of Indians.

One really gets exasperated by the intellectually stifling and gagging atmosphere in India. There is so much talk of ICT, Edusat and e-governance in India. On the one hand, the infrastructure to support the economic growth (it seems that economic growth is only termed in earning money) is not at place and on the other hand there is myopic attitude and adhocism in every sphere. There may be one problem and crises but the solutions are always out of context. The government may be undertaking investigation in Bombay Bombing of 7/11. They have learnt that the anomaly groups are using cyberspace to communicate. They have found the solution. They are banning the cyberspace. On the other hand, the government is so proud in telling that how it is using GSAT – III (The Edusat – the name by which it is popularly known ) for the promotion of education and promoting forward looking technologies but on the other hand, the great great grand sons of Lytton are stifling this activity because they want to investigate.

One can only pray that they may release the blocked sites. Till then, Proxy Servers Rang de Basanti.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Contact Form


Email *

Message *