The telecom department has asked Internet service providers to block 11,045 websites or web-links since January 2016 based on directions issued by the IT Ministry and various courts, Parliament was informed today. “From January 1, 2016, to date, instructions have been issued by the Department of Telecommunications to ISPs for blocking of about 11,045 websites, URLs, web pages,” Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
Internet service providers implement blocking or filtering of websites or uniform resource locators (URLs) or web pages by using suitable technology as per technical requirements, the minister said.
As per the Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 69A) and Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking for Access of Information by Public Rules 2009 made thereunder, the directions for blocking for public access of any information, including websites, URLs, web pages are issued by group coordinator at Cyber Law Division under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY).
“As per the directions of Meity, instructions for blocking of URLs, websites, web pages are issued by Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Further, as per the direction of various Hon’ble Courts, instructions are also issued to Internet Service Providers for compliance of the court orders from time to time,” Sinha said to PTI.
There’s no info on which websites have been asked by DoT to be blocked, but several torrent portals have been blocked for a while now.