IIPM: Govt to appeal against blocking of pages

The government has decided to appeal against the Gwalior district court order that recommended blocking of web pages with critical material about Arindam Chaudhuri's business school Indian Institute of Planning and Management (IIPM).

Communications and Information Technology Minister Kapil Sibal is understood to have asked the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEITY) to appeal against the court order, as it was passed without DEITY being made party to it.

"No notice was issued and the order came to us directly without giving us an opportunity to respond. We will ask the court to vacate the order," an IT Ministry source said. The appeal will be made in the next hearing on February 28.

The court order had asked DG of Indian Computer Emergency Response Team to block 78 web pages, including that of UGC, which were critical about IIPM. The UGC's blocked link cautioned students about IIPM being not a recognised university and therefore not entitled to award degrees.

The blocked links also included websites of The Indian Express, The Economic Times, The Times of India and Outlook that reported critical news items on IIPM.

The source said the order was sent to the department after the parties in the case Google India, Google Inc and website firm Weebly Inc did not comply with the order.

"The order is on civil matter not under IT Act. It was issued to us on January 29. We waited till February 14 but parties in the case neither complied with it nor appealed against it. DEITY was left with no option but to comply with the order," the source said.

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