The Indian Institute of Planning and Management (IIPM) and its director Arindam Chaudhuri got a taste of internet fury on Saturday as netizens lashed out at the blocking of 73 web addresses that featured content critical of the institute.
The government ordered the blocking of URLs on Thursday, following a Gwalior court order. Among the blocked links is one that leads to a University Grants Commission (UGC) notice.
The UGC, India’s apex higher education regulator, has repeatedly warned students that IIPM’s programmes are not recognised by statutory authorities.
The consequent outrage on Facebook and Twitter seemed to suggest the move to block URLs may have done more harm than good for the institute.
On Twitter, the topics ‘UGC’ and ‘IIPM’ were trending on Saturday.
A tweet by @mojorojo read: “What's hilarious to me is that one of the blocked URL's is of a UGC notice that underlines IIPM's unrecognised status. Outstanding.”
Another by @HoeZaay read: “IIPM is clearly not fit to hand out degrees. Blocking websites has only drawn more attention to the #IIPMScam.”
The move also provoked a response from minister of state for human resource development Shashi Tharoor, who wrote to junior telecom minister Milind Deora, asking him to remove the block on the UGC link.
Meanwhile, in a statement issued on Saturday, Chaudhuri maintained: “I am glad that the court has ordered the removal of those links.”