It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to defy technology and that the days of withholding information have gone
New Delhi: In the wake of a recent court order directing internet giants to remove objectionable contents from Indian websites, an opposition member on Thursday brought a motion in Rajya Sabha for annulment of government rules aimed at regulating internet content, reports PTI.
The statutory motion, moved by P Rajeeve (CPI-M), demanded that the Information Technology (Intermediaries Guidelines) Rules, 2011, are ultra vires of the provisions of the parent IT Act and violate the freedom of speech and expression.
He said the rules should be done away with and noted that Parliament had powers to intervene in matters of subordinate legislations like this and asked the government to bring the required amendments instead of bringing such rules.
Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley complimented Rajeeve for bringing to their notice that Parliament had a role in not just enacting new laws but also in overseeing and supervising subordinate legislations.
Noting that it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to defy technology and that the days of withholding information have gone, Jaitley urged the Minister to "reconsider the language of restraints" to prevent its misuse.
He said he had no objection to the architecture of the Bill but felt "there is need for a balanced approach".
EMS Natchiappan (Cong) said there was a House Committee on subordinate legislations to look into such matters.
The IT Rules of 2011 stipulate that websites "cannot host information that is a grossly harmful, harassing, blasphemous, defamatory, obscene, pornographic, paedophilic, libellous, invasive of privacy, hateful, or racially, ethnically objectionable, disparaging, relating or encouraging money laundering or gambling, or otherwise unlawful in any manner whatever, harm minors or infringes any patent, trademark, copyright or other proprietary right."
Despite all the challenges - price rises, economic slowdowns, rapid social change, gold retains its lustre for consumers feels the WGC
Mumbai: Gold demand in the India declined 29% to 207.6 tonne during the first quarter of this year due to new tax on gold jewellery, increased import duty and weakness and volatility in the rupee, a World Gold Council report on Thursday said.
India's first quarter gold demand decreased 29% in volume at 207.6 tonne, on a year-on-year quarterly basis, while dipped by 3% at Rs56,650 crore terms of value, the report said.
"The beginning of 2012 has been a challenging period for the Indian gold market. Despite all the challenges - price rises, economic slowdowns, rapid social change, gold retains its lustre for consumers. We are optimistic that demand levels will normalise in the upcoming months as Indian consumers adjust to the new gold landscape," WGC Managing Director, India and Middle East, Ajay Mitra said in a release issued here.
There was a 21-day nationwaide strike by retailers after the government proposed one percent excise duty, and increased the custom duty from two percent to four percent.
The government later rolled back the decision of imposing excise on jewellery.
Gold has been a strong performing asset and as Indians have always had a very deep emotional affinity towards the yellow metal, this will continue to fuel demand, he explained.
"We believe that the encouraging levels of demand seen during Akshaya Tritiya and the recent wedding season will flow through into the second quarter, as more consumers build gold purchases into their budgets," he added.
The jewellery demand in volume terms also fell by 19% to 152 tonne from first quarter 2011. However, in value it increased by 10% year-on-year to a record high of Rs41,480 crore.
Gold investment demand stood at Rs15,170 crore, a 27% year-on-year decline, in value terms. Investment demand tonnage was down 46% from the previous year at 55.6 tonne, it added.
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