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Pornography laws need clear-cut definitions: Experts

Thursday, July 22, 2021 • Tamil Comments

The arrest of Raj Kundra, the Mumbai-based businessman and husband of Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty, in connection with alleged transmission and selling of pornographic material has sparked a debate on how the laws view and definite pornography in India.

To be sure, pornography is regulated in India under various sections of the Information Technology Act, Indecent Representation of Women Act, and the IPC. Under them, sexually explicit content is curbed on the Internet and other forums.

A recent Quint article says that, under the aforementioned laws, the acts of "publication" and "sharing" of pornographic material alone are penalized. Jail terms and fines for offenses can go up to five to seven years under the laws.

It may be noted that internet service providers in recent years have banned more than 850 porn websites in the country. This has been made possible through judicial intervention. That said, this has not spelled a death knell to the porn industry in India, with porn sites garnering more views than ever before.

Experts are of the view that the anti-porn laws have to define the problem areas specifically. Unless that happens, law-enforcement agencies will invoke them arbitrarily.

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