Imphal: Manipur government on Sunday extended suspension of internet services for another five days till June 30, 3 pm citing “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 repercussions on the law and order situation in Manipur.”
The Manipur government’s order cited reports of incidents of violence, attacking and burning of houses including exchange of firing, still taking place in the conflict, has led to the ban on internet services.
It is worth noting that the Manipur High Court on June 16 directed the State authorities to provide limited internet services to the public.
The ethnic conflict in Manipur has killed over 100 people from both the Meitei and Kuki-Zomi communities and displaced over 60,000 in Manipur.
The order further added, “there is imminent danger of loss of life or damage to public/private property and widespread disturbances to public tranquility and communal harmony, as a result of inflammatory material and false rumours, which might be transmitted or circulated to the public through social media/messaging services on mobile services, SMS services and dongle services.”
It is still necessary to take adequate measures to maintain law and order in public interest, by stopping the spread of disinformation and rumours, through various social media platforms such as Whatsapp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc. on mobile phones etc. and sending bulk SMS, it added.