Centre likely to block anti-Islam film on Internet

The Centre is likely to block on Internet the controversial film deemed offensive to Islam that has sparked anti-US protests across the world and led to the killing of the US envoy in Libya.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs has forwarded a request from the Jammu and Kashmir government to block all webpages on which the film, The Innocence of Muslims, is available to the Director General of Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT), India for urgent action.

A top Home Ministry official said, "The DG CERT is looking into the matter and in all probability the webpages will be blocked soon." They said it will take a couple of days to block all the pages.

Meanwhile, the government has beefed up security at the US embassy in Delhi and four of its consulates in Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad.

The five US diplomatic missions are considered 'high risk' category buildings and are being provided round-the-clock security including monitoring of ingress and egress of every individual.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has also asked the Centre to block the controversial film on social networking sites fearing it could trigger law and problems in the Muslim-majority state.

This came as Hurriyat hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani called for protests in the valley against the film on Friday. Expressing shock over the film, Geelani said on Thursday: "I appeal the people of Jammu and Kashmir to protest against this act. We want to send this message across that Muslims can't tolerate anything against the beloved Prophet Muhammad. We cannot remain silent over this".

He appealed to the clerics to raise their voice against this act in Friday sermons and urged them to lead the protest rallies after the Friday prayers.

Geelani also condemned the role of United States and European Countries accusing them of supporting people who are openly against Muslims. "It is more shocking that in the name of freedom of speech, the governments are encouraging such acts," he said. "European countries and America have an agenda against Muslims and are trying to harm them in every possible way".

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