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Web Censorship Case: Original Complaint Filed By Vinay Rai Against Facebook India & Others

This is the complaint filed by Vinay Rai against Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, “Exboii” (sic), Shyni Blog, Topix, and others, under sections 200 and 156(3) of the Cr.P.C., read with sections 153A, 153B, 292, 293, 295A, 298, 109, 500, and 120B of the Indian Penal Code.

Complaint Case No __ of 2011

In the matter of:

Vinay Rai
S/o Sh. Mahima Rai
10 A, First Floor, Pritvi Raj Road
New Delhi

… Complainant

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Facebook India
Through its country head
Ms. Kirthiga Reddy
Office at : 4th Floor, Building-14, OPUS Towers, Mindspace, Cyberabad, APIIC SW Unit Layout, Madhapur, Hyderabad-500081
07799021 119
Through its chairman
Donald Edward Graham
Facebook Corporate Office 1601 S. California Ave. Palo Alto, CA 94304
Google India (P) Ltd.
Through its Country head
Shri Rajan Anandan
8th and 9th Floors, Tower — C, Building No.8, DLF Cyber City, Gurgacn – 122 002
Through its CEO,
Larry Page – CEO
1600, Amphitheatre, Parkway, Mountain View, CA 94043, USA
Yahoo India (P) Ltd.
Shri Arun Tadanki
Building No. 8, Tower-C, DLF Cyber City Phase-2, Gurgaon
Roy J. Bostock – Chairman
Yahoo! Inc.701 1st Ave., Sunnyvale, CA 94089
Microsoft India (P) Ltd.
Shri Bhaskar Pramanik
7th Floor, Cyber Green Tower-A.
DLF Cyber City, Phase-3 Gurgaon-122002
Through Steve Ballmer – CEO Microsoft Corporation
One Microsoft Way, Redmond, WA 98052-7329 USA
Zombie Time
Exboii [sic]
IMC India
My Lot
Shyni Blog

P.S. Tuglak Road

Complaint Under Section 200 Read With Section 156 (3) Of the Code of Criminal Procedure For Registration of FIR Under Section 153 (A), 153(B), 292, 293, 295(A), 298, 109, 500 and 120 B of the INDIAN PENAL CODE.


  1. That the complainant is a law abiding citizen of India. The Complainant is a resident of above stated address.
  2. The complainant before this Hon’ble Court is a senior journalist and editor of Akbari, an Urdu weekly.
  3. That the complainant is moving to this Court as a citizen of India, not only in public interest but also as an affected person who believes in a secular India.
  4. The accused persons are the publishers and service provider of the electronic contents and also responsible to manage and control online site and internet contents, who ever used and post the material on the site through internet.
  5. That the complainant wishes to draw the attention of this Hon’ble Court to certain content hosted on various websites, which are per-se inflammatory, unacceptable by any set of community standards; seeks to create enmity, hatred and communal Violence amongst various religious communities; is demeaning, degrading and obscene, and will corrupt minds and will seriously affect religious sentiments . It is submitted that complainant had received some information about these type contents and material posted on the social site as well as sites of the above named accused and thereafter the complainant in his office at the above mentioned address while going through the contents of the above said websites realized that the same were unacceptable to the secular fabric provided by the constitution of India and would be intolerable to any community or religion.
  6. That even on a bare perusal of the content it is clear that the same will certainly corrupt young minds below the age of 18 years is highly provocative and which may lead to illogical and dangerous consequences. It is humbly submitted that these contents prima facie appears to be dangerous for the society and communal harmony.
  7. That such content, if allowed to be hosted on these websites would seriously damage the secular fabric of India and would severely hurt the sentiment of general public following different religions. Following are the websites which host the said objectionable content as provided to the Hon’ble court in a sealed envelope: 1.Facebook, 2.Youtube, 3. Google 4.Yahoo,5.0rkut, 6.Broadreader, 7. Mylot, 8.Zombie Time, 9.Shyni Blog, 10.Blogspot, 11.Exbii.com, 12.IMC India
  8. That the accused persons are Social Networking Websites and their Directors, Agents with their addresses provided as per the memo of parties.
  9. The Social Networking Websites are only for providing the educational, historical, research and entertainment work etc. as part of their commercial activities meaning thereby that the functions and informations which are regarding the welfare, development and entertainment of the society.
  10. That on perusal of the same it has been found that presently there are so many objectionable materials available on these social networking websites which may lead to communal riots. It seems that the government authorities have turned a blind eye to the same and does not have any established measures or rules and guidelines to control and regulate the same. On the bare perusal of all these contents it is more than evident that the government is least bothered and as usual waiting for some dangerous consequences to happen before taking some appropriate actions . It is submitted that the neither police official nor the government had initiated any action to curve/check these activities sou moto and failed to registered any .case against the above named accused persons in any manner whatsoever under any law prevailing at present point of time and corrective measures against the said websites and the concerned officials.
  11. That the main social networking websites are Google, Facebook, Youtube, Orkut, Broadreader, Mylot, Zomie Time, Shyni Blog, Blogspot, Exbii.com, IMC India. These accused persons knowingly well these facts that these contents and materials are most dangerous for the community and peace of the harmony, but with common and malfide intention and hands under glove with each other failed to remove the same for the wrongful gain.
  12. That the complainant is filing this complaint against the Directors, Agents, Officials, Representatives and Employees of all the said Social Networking Websites for having committed the offences under Section 153 (A), 153(B), 292, 293, 295(A), 298 and 500 of the IPC, which this hon’ble court will appreciate even on a bare glance of the contents provided in the sealed cover. The same is being provided to this hon’ble court in a sealed cover understanding my social responsibility not to publicize the offensive and inflammatory material which may lead to communal disharmony.
  13. That the nature of the content hosted on each of these websites are ex-facie scurrilous, defamatory, prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony between different religions and communities, likely to cause fear and generate a feeling of insecurity amongst members of religious communities, obscene by any criteria of community standards of obscenity, seeks to corrupt young minds, malicious and insulting to religions and religious beliefs of certain communities and is intended to wound the religious feelings of persons and under no stretch of imagination be considered to be under freedom of speech and expression . The contents hosted on the websites are annexed to this complaint in a sealed cover as Annexure – A.
  14. That Perusal of the content will lead to the conclusion that the same is per-se unacceptable. It is humbly submitted that the contents of the site are clearly established the offences punishable under provisions mentioned in the above and if the action will taken against the accused person the same will be caused serious prejudice to our society and social value provided and protected under constitution of India.
  15. That as a member of the community, The complainant is not only individually hurt but also believe that if such content is allowed to continue to be on these platforms in this form, then incalculable and irreparable damage will be caused to the secular fabric of India. All those who are responsible for allowing this content to be hosted on the websites conspired with those who are the source of such content, and those who are promoting such material to malice and defame the country with intention to spread the communal violence to destabilise the country with undisclosed persons are liable to be prosecuted and punished under these Sections 153 (A), 153(B), 292, 293, 295(A), 298,109, 500 and 120B of the INDIAN PENAL CODE.
  16. That the contents which are shown on the social networking websites are clearly showing and instigating enmity between different groups on the grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language etc. and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony. It is clearly visible on the material available on these social networking websites.
  17. That the content which has been clearly shown on these websites are clearly imputations, assertions, prejudicial to national integration. The material is clearly visible in the Annexure .
  18. That the contents which are available on these social networking websites is obscene, that will create obscene books, pamphlets, paper, which can easily be downloaded from these social networking websites. It will affect the minds of the children. It is also harmful in the development of the nation.
  19. That the contents which are clearly mentioned and annexed in Annexure, shows the contents and malafide intention of these social networking websites to create deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage, religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs.
  20. That the cause of action for filing the present complaint has arisen on 8.12.2011 when the complainant downloaded these pictures and photos and these facts came to know in the knowledge of the complainant while sitting at his above stated residence The cause of action is continuing and arising day by day.
  21. That the cause of action has arisen within the jurisdiction of the Hon’ble Court which may take cognizance of the offence as committed by the accused persons.
  22. That the present complaint has been filed within the period of limitation and this Hon’ble Court is competent to entertain & try the present complaint and grant relief to the complainant.
  23. That the complainant seeks the permission of this Hon’ble Court to urge any additional ground or to examine any other witness or to submit any other documents which would be made available to him at the time of hearing of this complaint.


In view of the aforesaid submission made here in and in the interest of the justice, it is therefore most respectfully prayed that this Hon’ble Court may graciously be pleased to:

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  1. Register the present complaint.
  2. Take cognizance of the offence, as the contents per-se amount to commission of offences, as indicated above, without anything more.
  3. Summon try and punish the accused persons for committing the offences under section 153(A), 153(B), 292, 293, 295(A), 298, 109, 500 and 120B of the IPC.
  4. Take appropriate steps for prosecution and punishment of the above website owners, concerned officials and their representatives and undisclosed accused persons.

Pass such other or further orders as this Hon’ble Court may deem fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of the case.


Through Counsel

Dated: 15.12.2011
Place: New Delhi

By Pranesh Prakash. Reproduced with permission from the CIS-India blog.

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