Internet must be free from influences of govt. & big biz: junior IT Minister
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Internet must be free from influences of govt. & big biz: junior IT Minister

New Delhi, 26-November-2021, By IBW Team

Internet must be free from influences of govt. & big biz: junior IT Minister

Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister of Electronics & Information Technology inaugurated on Thursday India Internet Governance Forum 2021 (IIGF 2021), a 3-day online event on Internet governance, which is jointly being organized by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI).

The event, which is centered on the theme “Empowering India through Power of Internet”, is bringing stakeholders of Internet governance together to discuss the roadmap for digitization and reaffirm India as an essential participant globally.

The three-day event would also highlight the role and importance of digitization in the international policy development on Internet governance.

Dignitaries such as Rajeev Chandrasekhar, junior Meity Minister, Ajay Prakash Sawhney, Meity Secretary, Dr. Nirmita Narasimhan, Anil Kumar Jain, CEO, National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI), and Chair IIGF and President of Broadband India Forum TV Ramachandran graced the inaugural event.

Speaking at the inaugural event, Vaishnaw said, “Internet is the most important part of the economy and society and it is crucial to define its norms of governance. We have to bridge the digital divide with a focus on marginalized living in the remotest part of the country. It is also important to decide the ownership of the content shared online. Young minds are easily tempted to believe in what is shared online especially on social media and there is a need to decide responsibilities. It is also crucial to see the social impact of online disruption.

“Today, e-commerce has disrupted small businesses and that has a social impact. We have to work to bring smaller individuals to the mainstream. Cyber security requires maximum attention. Entire systems can be taken for ransom or can be held hostage. Can we develop a robust system for cyber security? I hope this forum will bring solid answers to these questions.”

According to Chandrasekhar, “The government is committed to make the Internet open, safe and trusted, and accountable to all.  It must also remain free from the influences of both (the) government as well as big businesses. We would soon have a billion Indians… connected online and availing government services, subsidies, etc. “The future of IIGF is to shepherd and work with government bodies to ensure that future jurisprudence on the internet is developed by bringing users on board as the most important stakeholders. The future of global Internet should be led by India’s Internet ecosystem and innovation capabilities.”

The digital drive in India is in full swing to bring 100 percent of the population on the Internet and the event would focus on the digitization roadmap, opportunities, possibilities, and challenges in India.

“Internet has become an intrinsic part of our lives and we use it to learn, communicate, and find opportunities. Handling such a complex ecosystem requires governance and IIGF has taken the lead. All stakeholders should join together to anticipate what is going to happen in the coming years and find solutions together,” said Meity Secretary Sawhney.

The India Internet Government Forum is an initiative associated with the UN Internet Governance Forum (UN-IGF). The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is a multi-stakeholder platform bringing representatives together from various groups to discuss public policy issues related to the Internet.  IIGF previously held a curtain-raiser event with an interesting insight into the roadmap for Digitisation in India in October 2021.

The online event is also going to host three plenary sessions on themes: ‘India & Internet- India’s Digital Journey & her Global Role’ chaired by Chandrasekhar; ‘Connecting all Indians’ chaired by Sawhney and ‘Securing internet for safe future’ chaired by Dr. Sanjay Bahl, DG, CERT-In.


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