Plea in SC Calls for Social Media Regulation to Combat Rise in Sexual Offenses

A petition has been filed in the Supreme Court, urging the Centre to take measures ensuring that social media platforms refrain from exhibiting obscene or pornographic content, as it is linked to an increase in sexual offenses. Filed by Paediatric Surgeon Sanjay Kulshresthra, the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) asserts that the easy accessibility of pornography via mobile internet not only distorts sexual behavior but also contributes to a concerning surge in sexual crimes against minor girls.

The plea contends that to curb the escalating number of sexual offenses, the apex court should instruct the respondents to employ their authority under the Information Technology Act to mandate that social media platforms “take reasonable measures to discourage users from hosting, displaying, uploading, modifying, publishing, transmitting, storing, or sharing obscene or pornographic material.”

The petitioner has named the Union ministries of Electronics and Information Technology, Home Affairs, and Women and Child Development as respondents in the case.

“While there could be various factors contributing to the alarming increase in child rapes, the petitioner has identified that the easy availability of pornography via almost cost-free internet accessible 24/7, particularly on mobile phones across all age groups and economic strata, could be a significant factor,” the PIL states.

It further asserts that the consumption of pornography fosters a casual attitude among men towards sexual violence against women.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte