The Manipur government on Friday issued a fresh order for further suspension of mobile data services and internet services, including broadband for another five days to prevent any disturbances of peace and public order in the state.
An order issued by commissioner (Home), government of Manipur H Gyan Prakash stated that the director general of police, Manipur vide letter No.IC/11(163)/2008-PHQ(Pt) dated May 11 reported that there are still reports of incidents like fighting amongst volunteers/youths of major communities residing in the state with report of arson of houses and premises.
There is apprehension that some anti-social elements might use social media extensively for transmission of images, hate speech and hate video messages inciting the passions of the public which might have serious repercussion for the law and order situation in Manipur, it added.
The order of further suspension/curbing of mobile data services, internet/data services including broadband including Reliance Jio Fibre, Airtel Xtreme Black, BSNL FTTH etc. and internet/data services through VSATs of Bharatnet Phase-II in the territorial jurisdiction of Manipur, in continuation to this office order of even No H-3607/4/2022-HD-HD dated May 7 and in exercise of the powers conferred under Rule 2 of Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency or Public Safety) Rules, 2017, it read.
There is an imminent danger of loss of life and damage to public and private property and wide spread disturbances to public tranquillity and communal harmony as a result of inflammatory material and false rumours, which might be transmitted circulated to the public through social media messaging services on mobile services, SMS services and dongle services, the order mentioned.
To thwart the design and activities of anti-national and anti-social elements and to maintain peace and communal harmony and to prevent any loss of life or danger to public and private property, it has become necessary to take adequate measures to maintain law and order in public interest, by stopping the spread of disinformation and false rumours, through various social media platform such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc. on mobile phone and SMS, for facilitating and mobilisation of mobs of agitators and demonstrators, which can cause loss of life and damage to public and private property by indulging in arson and vandalism and other types of violent activities, it stated.
The order is issued to prevent any disturbances of peace and public order in the jurisdiction of the state and shall be in force for another five days with immediate effect from the time of the suspension order becomes operational, it continued.
The order is being passed ex-parte in view of the emergent situation and shall be published for the information of public through press and electronic media, it maintained. Any person found guilty for violation of aforesaid order will be liable for legal action, it added.