April 17th, 2015
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday wrote a letter to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman Rahul Khullar in support of net neutrality. He demanded (TRAI) should urgently come out with measures in collaboration with Department of Telecommunications to protect network neutrality.
“Many citizens have even written letters to you (Khullar) reiterating their stand about the matter. It is important to stress on the stand of the state government and our party Biju Janata Dal regarding the issue and TRAI also treat this issue with nuanced attention that it deserves,” said Patnaik.
“It must be noted that this is not an issue of just elite as it is being made out to be. It will affect even the poor because so many services are delivered over the internet today. The government is trying to extend its services to the people through this medium because it will be effective and inexpensive. Present usage of the net seems to encompass everyone, rich or poor, particularly the younger people,” Patnaik said in the letter.
“Presently the youth of this country is paying a high cost for an inefficient net connection, I do not see any justification in limiting the ability of new start-up companies to reach the net user,” said the chief minister.
“We must ensure that access to Internet for an Indian citizen anywhere in our nation means unthrottled equal access to full spectrum of the open world wide web in practice,” Naveen said and added that this is especially important since the Internet is key to unparalleled ability to exercise the right to access knowledge and free expression.
The CM pointed out that the word ‘free’ is being misused in the ongoing debate over the issue. The word ‘free’ should not be confused with the word ‘freedom’.”
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