Cyber Crime
The panel will have representatives from the Centre, Yahoo, Google, Microsoft and Facebook.
File photo: PTI

The Supreme Court set up a high-powered expert committee on Wednesday to look for a technological solution to block the uploading of videos of rape and child pornography on internet.

The committee will have representatives from the central government and the three search engines -- Google India, Yahoo India, Microsoft Corporation (India) Ltd -- and social networking site Facebook.

Setting up a high-powered committee, the bench of Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Uday Umesh Lalit asked Google India, Yahoo India, Microsoft Corporation (India) Ltd and Facebook to send their top technocrats to India to participate in brain storming meeting to evolve ways to block offensive sex videos.

Giving the committee 15 days' time to come up with technological solutions, the court said that they would report the outcome of the meeting before the next date of hearing on April 20.

The court order came as it is looking for a solution through which the uploading of videos of sexual offences and child pornography is automatically blocked instead of the existing practice of blocking them after they are uploaded.

The court was told by some cyber security officials working under the CBI that the internet was a wild highway and blocking videos of sexual violence at the source itself was a technological challenge, since blocking videos on sex could also eclipse the work of arts and sculpture like in Ajanta, Ellora and Khajuroha.

The top court had on December 5 last year sought responses from the three internet search engines and Facebook on a plea that sought curbs on sharing of videos related to sexual offences and cybercrime.

The court had sought response from three search engines and Aand social networking site Facebook on NGO Prajwala's plea seeking a defined place where one could report such rape videos and seek their blocking.

Although the scope of the hearing now stands expanded, initially the hearing had commenced on a letter by Hyderabad-based non-governmental organisation Prajwala, along with two rape videos. Two videos submitted in a pen drive showed a man raping a woman and another man filming it.

Activist Sunitha Krishnan, who runs Prajwala, had also started a campaign with the hashtag #Shametherapist on social media. 

As part of the campaign, Sunitha had shared videos of a gang-rape, after concealing the victim's identity. and asked for people to identify the rapists in the films.

IANS Inputs