The Hitavada - - THEOPINIONPAGE -

GOOD tid­ings are in the off­ing. The hon­ourable Supreme Court has stated un­equiv­o­cally that the Cen­tral Gov­ern­ment, Face­book, Google, Mi­crosoft and other so­cial mar­ket­ing sites have agreed to stamp out porno­graphic videos from their re­spec­tive plat­forms. This is un­de­ni­ably a great piece of in­for­ma­tion for which the larger so­ci­ety was wait­ing. The bench of Mr. Jus­tice Madan Lokur and Mr. Jus­tice U.U. Lalit has done well to bring the is­sue to head. How­ever, the is­sue does not stop only at porno­graphic videos, but ex­tends to other un­de­sir­able ma­te­ri­als such as on­line games in which no norms of de­cency, moral­ity and self-dis­ci­pline are fol­lowed. This ma­te­rial, be­yond just the porno­graphic stuff, is also equally dan­ger­ous for and in­ju­ri­ous to in­di­vid­ual and so­cial good in count­less man­ners, so much so that many young­sters in­dulging in those on­line games have com­mit­ted sui­cides as part of the story. Such ma­te­ri­als, too, need to be stamped out from all plat­forms of In­ter­net and al­lied tools.

Thus, the need is to ex­pand the scope of ac­tion of dele­tion of ob­jec­tion­able ma­te­ri­als from all forms of vir­tual me­dia so that no­body in the so­ci­ety can ac­cess those and ac­quire per­verse ide­ol­ogy and ideas. A lot of le­gal think­ing will have to be done in or­der to achieve such a wide­spread ban on un­de­sir­able con­tent. The begin­ning of all the ac­tiv­ity will have to be done by seek­ing ap­pro­pri­ate def­i­ni­tions of what is un­de­sir­able and fit that into le­gal par­lance so that sub­se­quent ac­tion will have a le­gal per­mis­sion and con­sti­tu­tional va­lid­ity.

That done, the Gov­ern­ment and its law-en­forc­ing agen­cies can start clamp­ing down on in­di­vid­u­als or or­gan­i­sa­tions that still in­dulge in un­couth ac­tiv­ity on vir­tual me­dia plat­forms by way of porno­graphic ma­te­ri­als or dan­ger­ous and dirty on­line games that have the abil­ity to cap­ture the imag­i­na­tion of young minds whose sense of right or wrong is yet to evolve and con­sol­i­date. Such a clamp­ing down is nec­es­sary to pro­tect the so­ci­ety’s moral health and spir­i­tual fi­bre.

Of course, this will be the le­gal route that must be taken at all lev­els. But if the so­ci­ety wishes to reg­is­ter a last­ing vic­tory in the bat­tle against pornog­ra­phy and on­line crime-games, then much ac­tion will have to be ini­ti­ated in the so­cial arena, op­er­at­ing through fam­i­lies or schools and sub­se­quently in col­leges. Much ef­fort will have to be made by the whole so­ci­ety to en­sure that its young gen­er­a­tions do not fall prey to im­moral and un­eth­i­cal ways of en­ter­tain­ment and pas­time.

When the ef­fort to mould the young minds be­gins right in the fam­ily, in the kitchen, at the din­ing ta­ble, dur­ing play­time, then its value will be im­mense. In ad­di­tion to all that, if the chil­dren are mo­ti­vated to take to read­ing of books, and also in­tro­duced to dis­ci­plined ac­tiv­ity to build mus­cles and mind, much greater goal of hav­ing young gen­er­a­tions ed­u­cated in moral groom­ing will be achieved.

This should be the ac­tual goal of hu­man civil­i­sa­tion. This should also be the strat­egy to build a health­ier so­ci­ety in which moral­ity has a sway over un­think­ing ac­tions of not just the young­sters but also of the el­ders. This may ap­pear boor­ish to many so­called mod­ern (and also pseudo) in­tel­lec­tu­als. Yet, a deeper thought to the idea will con­vince them that such a moral stance is ab­so­lutely nec­es­sary to main­tain moral health of the larger so­ci­ety. If the hon­ourable Supreme Court is ini­ti­at­ing cer­tain stan­dard ac­tion against the ill-ef­fects of the In­ter­net on the mil­len­nial gen­er­a­tion, then the larger so­ci­ety also has to play a pos­i­tive role in aid­ing the over­all thought and its im­ple­men­ta­tion.

Thus, in other words, what we need to do now is to ex­pand the scope of the idea not just to reg­u­late the vir­tual me­dia, but also to have a greater moral weight on the larger so­cial en­tity. The idea is to en­sure that we leave no scope for any­body to sneak into so­cial do­main dirty porno­graphic sites or dan­ger­ous on­line games that mis­lead im­pres­sion­able minds to take to wrong ways of be­hav­iour and stray into wrong lanes of life.

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