Permanently Ban VPN Services in India: Parliamentary Committee Urges the Government

Indian Parliamentary Committee Urges the Government to Permanently Block VPNs in India

Although Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are great for accessing inaccessible online content, authorities in India deem them as nifty tools for cybercriminals to hide their online identity. As a result, the Ministry of Home Affairs in India has now urged the Indian government to permanently block VPN services in the country to protect the interests of its citizens and prevent cybercrimes in the country.

As per a recent report by Medianama (via Gadgets360), the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs has passed a report that encourages the Indian government to detect and permanently block VPN services in India. The committee cited the security challenges that VPNs pose to allow cybercriminals to hide their identity online.

So, in a recent report titled “Action Taken By Government on the Recommendations/ Observations Contained in the 233rd Report on the Atrocities And Crimes Against Women And Children”, the committee suggested that the government should develop a “coordination mechanism” by partnering with international agencies to block VPNs permanently in India.

Now, this is not the first time the committee took a stand against VPN services in India. The aforementioned report that was submitted to the Rajya Sabha recently is a follow-up of a report that was tabled back in March this year. However, in the recent report, the committee encouraged the Home Ministry of India to work with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) to detect and block VPNs permanently.

Although the MeitY came up with a response for the report, the committee was not satisfied with it. As per reports, the MeitY of India has mentioned several powers via which the government can block information from public access. This includes “interest of sovereignty and integrity of India; defence of India; security of the State; friendly relations with foreign States or; public order or, for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to above.”

The MeitY, on the other hand, informed the committee that if the request to block VPNs in India came under Section 69A of the IT Act, the authoritarian body would be able to initiate the process as per the rules specified in the said section. Apart from this, however, the organization did not directly respond to the proposal of permanently blocking VPN services in India.

Other than requesting to permanently block VPNs in India, the committee also urged the government to set up more cyber forensic labs in India to fight cybercrimes. Furthermore, it also encouraged the Indian government to refresh courses on cybercrimes for Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) in India.

21 Comments

  1. Something tells me whoever wrote that report doesn’t really care about privacy and trying to make themselves look like they “care”, banning VPN and Onion routing will just open new portals for Cyber Criminals. Either that, or they do not really know about Cyber Security.

  2. What kind of dictatorship is that. I wouldn’t be surprised if someday they wake up and say “KFC is no longer as good as it used to be. Ban it.” “The maid didn’t come today again. Ban her” Just because this is the easy solution, doesn’t mean it is the best. Without VPNs we are bound to leave our personal info exposed out there in the internet, to the ISPs with absolute zero encryption. That will lead to even more cyber attacks.

  3. Government bans VPN then Supreme court is certainly going to Overturn the government’s order citing Privacy as Basic Structure of constitution.

    1. I don’t really know… The govt has done many things which were supposed to be overturned by supreme court (like the IT laws 2021).

  4. this country s getting weird by the days. i mean its high time to leave this country nd never look back. damn ig even north korea s more liberal than India. kmn

  5. If your so called govt agencies can’t even detect a criminal who’s using vpn services for illegal purposes you should probably fire all these cybercrime authorities smh

  6. I wish I was rich enough to leave this country. I m not at all happy with this current government is invading our privacy.

  7. This is bullshit, im living democratic republic of india not in dictatorship, india is becoming horrible place for us i want to leave asap this country

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