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DoT Forms Committee To Look Into Net Neutrality Issue

On Jan. 29, 2015 outside the FCC, Free Press organized a a historic battle between two contenders who symbolized the fight over the fate of the Internet. On one side was Net Neutral-i-kitty, representing the millions of Internet users who had spoken out for Net Neutrality over the past year. On the other side was Cable Boss, hailing from the self-serving nation of Comcast.
On Jan. 29, 2015 outside the FCC, Free Press organized a a historic battle between two contenders who symbolized the fight over the fate of the Internet. On one side was Net Neutral-i-kitty, representing the millions of Internet users who had spoken out for Net Neutrality over the past year. On the other side was Cable Boss, hailing from the self-serving nation of Comcast.

A Department of Telecommunications panel will be coming out with a report on net neutrality in the second week of May, The Economic Times reported.

Telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said a six member committee will make a comprehensive decision independent of TRAI, an unprecedented move due to the gravity of the matter. "We constituted a committee. We feel that Internet is the creation of human mind. Internet should have linkages to the common man in a non-discriminatory manner," Prasad is quoted as saying.

Prasad previously backed the principle of net neutrality on Twitter, calling it one of the finest creations of mankind.

#Internet is one of the finest creations of human mind.It belongs to enitre humanity and not to a few. #NetNeutralitypic.twitter.com/TlWmPQLRGn

— Ravi Shankar Prasad (@rsprasad) April 7, 2015

The net neutrality debate has been in the news since TRAI floated a consultation paper to discuss a regulatory framework for OTT (over the top) services like WhatsApp, Viber, and Skype.

The launch of of Airtel Zero, which allows internet companies to pay for the data charges incurred by the customer, acted as a lightning rod, though the company characterises the service as the equivalent of toll-free voice calling.

A volunteer run SaveTheInternet campaign went viral over the weekend, with the release of All India Bakchod's video, which has seen over a million views so far. Over a lakh email responses have been sent to TRAI on the consultation paper, which has a deadline of April 24.

Read:

  • Flipkart CEO Compares Net Neutrality Backlash To Apartheid
  • Net Neutrality Campaign Goes Viral As Netizens Answer Clarion Call To Save The Internet

  • All India Bakchod Weighs In On The Net Neutrality Debate

  • 8 Indian Tech Startups Speak On Airtel Zero And Net Neutrality
  • Blow To Net Neutrality As Airtel Launches Marketing Platform

  • Act Now: India's Telecos And Regulators Are Trying To Kill Open Internet

  • Indian Regulator Invites Consultation To Regulate WhatsApp, Viber, Other OTT Services

  • Blog: Mandating US-Style Network Neutrality Makes Little Sense For India

  • Blog: Is Net Neutrality More Important Than Internet Access? Why Babajob Is On Internet.org

  • Odisha MP Tathagata Satpathy Writes Letter To TRAI Chairman Supporting Net Neutrality

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This article exists as part of the online archive for HuffPost India, which closed in 2020. Some features are no longer enabled. If you have questions or concerns about this article, please contact indiasupport@huffpost.com.