An attack by the Shiv Sena on cyber cafés in a suburb on Mumbai’s eastern fringes last week has prompted the state and Central governments to mull a ban on Orkut, a popular social-networking site operated by the Internet company Google.
On Friday, the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team in New Delhi will decide if it should accept a report sent to it by the Thane police recommending restrictions across India on Orkut, designed in January 2004 by Turkish software engineer Orkut Buyukkokten.
The Team was formed in 2003 under the Information Technology Act by the Central Ministry of Information and Technology to regulate online content. It can block websites it deems offensive.
Controller for Certification Dr N Vijayaditya told HT: “We have to study the police report before we come to a conclusion.”
A spokesperson for Google (Orkut’s parent company) said: “Orkut works on a hosted platform, which allows users to create content. Google does not proactively monitor the content, unless it is flagged.”
She said: “Once flagged, we will review the content against the terms and conditions mentioned on the website. We will pull out the content if it violates these.”
Thane Deputy Commissioner of Police Anup Kumar Singh said: “While we await a report from the agency, cyber café owners in the region have been asked to request customers to refrain from using the website.”