Certain misgivings are being raised regarding Rule 16 under Part III of the rules which mention that in a case of emergency nature, interim blocking directions may be issued by the Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
It is hereby clarified that this is not a new provision. For the past eleven years, since 2009, this provision has been exercised by the Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and IT under the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking for Access of Information by Public) Rules, 2009.
Under the rules issued on 25th February 2021, this provision has only been replaced with Secretary, Ministry of I&B because Part III of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 would be administered by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.
It is reiterated – no change in provision has been made nor any new provision has been added on blocking of content under Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021.