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A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Make standards certification mandatory... A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science Engineering seats go abegging Telangana in top gear… Alexa – Talking Wikipedia …and of a popular trade leader Computation of GDP – conundrums continue Roaring Ro-Ro facility Things happen by accident and not by design... Wise Presidents Mersal magnified Convulsions in The Hindu Sri Lanka votes for change Lalu’s envy, India’s pride A proud Madrasi Fortune for Indian Airlines For whom the bell tolls? Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Another Indian music maestro at the UN Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya Waning interest in public discussions… Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Breaththrough in malaria control The balancing act Maximising the micro pricing … Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Where is Rajaji? Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Why this malaise in medical education? Tatas moving out of urea production... Noble nonagenarians... The why of tax incentives Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami IPL type auction for VCs? Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Delhi is distant… Shipping woes of Chennai companies A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… He saved millions from starvation... Preserving for the future Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Music happens An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... Haul over the coal The brown list of Venkitaramanan China invests in India An enemy’s enemy is a friend Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet The Jan Dhan bonanza Polls and promises S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Modi and the lady Boy, can you beat these? TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Come elections, come advertisements... Streamlining mandatory third party cover L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist Mu Sigma – is no more Funding the un-funded Editor's Notes EVM is tamper-proof The Swadeshi Trump Poor quality of university VCs Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ Delhi returns to BJP Tough task taking states together Moily’s bold thrust Towards speedy justice Medical costs hit the roof... Revive development banks... Tatas moving out of urea production... A professional at the helm of IRDA... Solar, solar everywhere … Quality education through the PPP mode Small units prefers to remain small... Fortune 500 review The sea- saw battle continues... When small is no larger beautiful.. The rise and rise of KCP Build close rapport with business leaders F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Readers' Mail How Air-India loses customs... Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. Auto components surge… Delhi is distant Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Valli, they are more marginalised Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector Protest masters... Secularism and anti-Hinduism Kudos to NDTV... A yen for wastage… Robber barons everywhere Parliament in paralysis... A glass full of corruption Airlines in India: cost and space TIAM turns a full cycle R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Vibrant Gujarat Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai London, London Narayan When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's Kinetic Karnataka IPL - no surprise this scam This scant respect for Law Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform More Shakti to resource mobilisation... More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! PC’s preference for professionals Solar thermal shines… When nations steal growth from one another… Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? The nuclear option A think tank for Chennai A welcome initiative by the judiciary Revving up the manufacturing sector Gay abandon in pricing An inexplicable neglect Nuclear power at the nucleus TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership GNS - 100: our first subscriber Shale gas and its shallow future B H Kothari - a tribute Multi-faceted Venkat to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines No Maha Koottani in TN... Sweeter prospects for sugar When the President was rendered homeless… A friendly business group Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Fuel for thought The rise and fall of Annamalai University Contrarian cousins A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Should we change the official year? Plummeting profits of PSBs A more liberated TN… Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW The Gulf aviation boom When online building permits work…. New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Russi Mody – a tribute No engine for this car Which side are you, Montek? Pharma – overdose of copying Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Discoms deserve better… SoA @ 80 Tribute – M V Murugappan TGS- The king storyteller Cutting the nose to spite the face Delhi Chalo... Cement prices continue to rise… More heat than light Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Put expensive assets created to use... Wanted: a second airport for Chennai Editor's Says The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Making ‘my Amaravati’... Increasing non co-operation of state leaders ONGC at KG Basin The power-full Hindujas Return to king coal for urea... PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Intellectual of rare qualities Building loyalty through the stomach Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Road development slows down Adharma of opposition politics Quality silica from Neyveli Modi storms Silicon Valley Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research Welcome focus on core competence Why land prices zoom in TN? IAS invades NDDB... Demise of a media baron... Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Kulandai was a giant TELANGANA at last…BUT Gas is the way forward West Bengal: mindless malignancy Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Align crops to agro climate endowments… The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Strengthen the base... When Ratan Tata visited SRM Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Muffled voices for merit… GM Technology at last! Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V The few handicaps... Shanti and Sadhana through Music Excel Generators provide the vital back-up EEC at the National Media Centre Sweet news for TN sugar mills He continues the focus on social amelioration Tribute Silver Years of Madras Musings Tax agriculture Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara More tributes to GR Rahman at CIC The star of Spencers is no more CII projects higher growth… Five star activism stalls development activity Banning booze... Paytm karo... Welcome GST MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways Where a state respects its litterateurs…
 
Boy, can you beat these?

One, a man gets arrested for displaying cartoons on his Facebook page that mocks corruption in high places. Two, two young girls get arrested for wondering aloud on their FB page why Mumbai should be closed on Thackeray’s funeral. Three, a professor was arrested for circulating a cartoon that lampoons Mamata Banerjee. Four, two Air India employees go behind the bars for sharing jokes about Dr. Manmohan Singh. Five, a worker is jailed for posting comments about Narendra Modi. And most recently a class XI student was jailed for commenting about Azam Khan, a minister in UP.

All these have been courtesy Section 66A of the Information Technology Act. It’s a throwback to Orwell’s book, Animal Farm, 1984 that talked about the Big Brother and an indication of how thin-skinned we have all become. The section gave the police powers to arrest those who post objectionable content online and provides for a three year jail term.

And now the Supreme Court of India has struck down the section as being unconstitutional thumbing down the government’s argument that it would use the section judiciously. This is what happens when you have a history of injudicious use of an enabling section. The Court has curtly ruled that the right to freedom of speech and expression enshrined under the Constitution is inviolable. The Court expressed that language of the section was vague as it did not properly define words like offensive and persistent.

Ruling that there is a difference between discussion, advocacy and incitement, it said that discussion and advocacy, howsoever annoying, have to be allowed.


What Section 66A says:

"Any person who sends, by means of a computer resource or a communication device

(a) any information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character; or

(b) any information which he knows to be false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred or ill will, persistently by making use of such computer resource or a communication device,

(c) any electronic mail or electronic mail message for the purpose of causing annoyance or inconvenience or to deceive or to mislead the addressee or recipient about the origin of such messages, shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with fine."

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