July 6, 2021 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
Chandigarh: A year after blocking Sikh Siyasat’s news websites in India, the Government of India today blocked Sikh Siyasat’s Facebook page too. Sikh Siyasat is a Punjab based news and media house which focuses on news and analysis related to issues concerning Punjab and the Sikhs. Started in 2006, the Sikh Siyasat remained a trusted source of information and analysis, especially on issues concerning Punjab and the Sikhs. Sikh Siyasat’s Facebook page is followed by more than 2 lakh 41 thousands people out of which considerable numbers were from Punjab and India.
#India’s undeclared #censorship goes rampant against #Sikh #media. Today @SikhSiyasat’s @Facebook page is blocked in India without any intimation. Last year India had blocked 3 Sikh Siyasat websites without any notice or intimation. pic.twitter.com/tm3dFM1bNl
— ਪਰਮਜੀਤ ਸਿੰਘ || Parmjeet Singh (@psgazi) July 6, 2021
In a tweet, Sikh Siyasat’s editor Parmjeet Singh said: “India’s undeclared censorship goes rampant against Sikh media. Today Sikh Siyasat’s Facebook page is blocked in India without any intimation”.
“Last year India had blocked 3 Sikh Siyasat websites without any notice or intimation”, the tweet reads further.
Facebook shows a message to the visitors of Sikh Siyasat’s Facebook page which reads: “”You are unable to this content because local laws restrict our ability to show it”.
Last year the Government of India had blocked three websites of Sikh Siyasat News. SSN’s website for news and views in English (sikhsiyasat.net) was blocked on 6 June 2020; while Punjabi website (sikhsiyasat.info) was blocked on 4 July 2021. Sikh Siyasat’s multimedia website (sikhsiyasat.com) was blocked later in September 2020.
“The Government of India had first attempted to block our website in October 2015 but at that time we were served a notice, and we were given an opportunity to present our side. After listening to our explanation in reply to the said notice the Cyber Law Group of Government of India had dismissed a complaint against Sikh Siyasat’s website and Facebook page”, said Parmjeet Singh Gazi.
“In 2020 our websites were blocked without any notice. The government refused to share reasons for blocking our website even under the Right of Information Act. We were not even informed about blocking”, said he, adding that the Facebook page of Sikh Siyasat is also blocked on the same lines without any notice or intimation.
“The Government of India stifles freedom of expression and free press. I have written three letters to authorities that I am ready to offer an explanation for unblocking my website but those letters never got any reply”, said he.
In my letters I gave an undertaking that any write up which the government or authorities may find objectionable after listening to my explanation will be voluntarily removed from the website, but still the authorities did not provide us any opportunity to present our side. It all shows that the government does not want to get its concerns, if any, addressed. It simply wants to stifle the voice of the free Sikh press, said Parmjeet Singh.
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