Centre for Internet & Society

Snehashish Ghosh on behalf of the Centre for Internet and Society sent a letter to the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, requesting for a public consultation on India's position at the Working Group on Enhanced Cooperation (WGEC).

January 3, 2014

Shri Kapil Sibal,
Honourable Minister for Communication and Information Technology
Ministry of Communication and Information Technology,
Government of India

Subject: Public consultation at the domestic level on the position of Government of India at WGEC

Dear Sir,

We at the Centre for Internet and Society, Bangalore (“CIS”) commend, Government of India’s participation at the Working Group on Enhanced Cooperation (WGEC), working under the aegis of United Nations Commission on Science and Technology and Development (CSTD). The Working Group was set up in pursuance of General Assembly Resolution A/Res/67/195, to identify a shared understanding of enhanced cooperation on public policy issues pertaining to the internet. The WGEC after its first meeting circulated a questionnaire to collect the views and positions of the stakeholders on various aspects of enhanced cooperation. The Government of India responded to the questionnaire and also represented its position at the second meeting of WGEC held in Geneva from November 6-8, 2013. We would like the Government to take cognizance of representations from concerned stakeholders before finalizing its position.

In this regard, we would like to note, Government of India’s commitment towards multi-stakeholder approach in formulation of public policy pertaining to the internet. At the Internet Governance Forum, 2012 held in Baku, the Honourable Minister for Communications and Information Technology noted that the “issues of public policy related to the internet have to be dealt with, by adopting a multi-stakeholder, democratic and transparent approach”. Furthermore, the Government of India’s stand at the World Conference on International Telecommunications, 2012 in Dubai supported and recognized the multi-stakeholder nature of the internet.

However, it seems that the Government has digressed from its previous stand on internet governance whereas it fell short of having a multi-stakeholder public consultation on India’s position on enhanced cooperation at the WGEC. We earnestly urge you to hold domestic public consultation before the next WGEC meeting.

Thank you.

Snehashish Ghosh,
Policy Associate,
Centre for Internet and Society, Bangalore

Copied to: Dr. Ajay Kumar, Joint Secretary, DietY, MOCIT and Shri. J. Satyanarayana, Secretary, DietY, MOCIT

Download a copy of the letter here

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