UN Special Rapporteurs, Telecom News, ET Telecom
Observations were made in Mandates of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression; the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and association; and the Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy.
The report is written by Irene Khan, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, Clement Nyaletsossi Voule, Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and association and Joseph Cannataci, Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy.
“As stated in previous communications sent to Your Excellency’s Government, we are concerned that these new rules come at a time of a global pandemic and large-scale protests by farmers in the country, where the enjoyment of the freedom of Opinion and expression, including the right to receive information and the right to privacy are particularly important for the realization of several other civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights, ”the report said.
“We would like to reiterate that restrictions on freedom of expression should never be invoked to justify muzzling any advocacy for multiparty democracy, democratic principles and human rights,” the report said.
The report says that as a global leader in technological innovation, India has the potential to develop legislation that can put it at the forefront of efforts to protect digital rights. However, the greatly expanded scope of the Rules is likely to do just the opposite.
“We therefore encourage the government to take all necessary measures to conduct a detailed review of the rules and to consult all relevant stakeholders, including civil society dealing with human rights, freedom of expression, right to privacy and digital rights, ”the report says. mentionned.
“We understand that the new rules were issued under the Information Technology Act 2000 and therefore have not been subject to parliamentary scrutiny or open to stakeholder consultation. We believe that such consultations with relevant stakeholders are essential in order to ensure that the final text is consistent with India’s international legal obligations, in particular with Articles 17 and 19 of the ICCPR, “he added.
This observation as well as India’s comment will also be published later in the regular report to be presented to the Human Rights Council, he added.