Friday, October 30, 2020 | ePaper

Silencing voice has not helped government to govern

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THE Home Ministry on Tuesday in a statement has asked people both at home and abroad to refrain from spreading "false, fabricated, confusing, and inciting statements" on social media about the government, military, police and members of different other law enforcement agencies. Such people are presenting false and baseless news about the security forces, which threaten peace by spreading fear, concern and confusion among the general public. It said they must stop and anyone who will not pay heed will face legal consequences. The government will take legal actions now to maintain stability, domestic security and the nation's well-being.
It appears the statement highlights a high level tension within the government and among various organs of the government from growing social media activities. Particularly after the killing of Major Sinha by a lower grade ordinary police officer, the lack of a clear government stance how to handle the issue prompted serious misgivings among the forces. Social media then plays a crucial rule to break the issue to the public, however, exposing the government to irreparable embarrassment. At the moment some YouTube programmes are regularly spreading news and views to cause serious unrest at the highest level of the government. Need no mention that some of these programmes are recorded abroad but enjoying popularity to local people.
This statement demanding silence of the social media is the latest among a series of similar statements issued by different government agencies from earlier this year aiming at gagging the freedom of speech. It includes prohibiting nurses, health officers, and public servants from talking to media. Teacher and students of secondary and higher secondary schools not to write and share posts in social media on the ground it may impair the image of the government or show disrespect to any important person, institution or profession.
Many wonder what is wrong with the government for becoming so much nervous. We are against any excesses by social media but they are also giving public voice a chance to raise protest against murders, rapes and such other lawlessness now flooding the country. This is a totally corrupt dysfunctional government, we would say it should address the renationalise crisis if it can.
Silence has not helped  the government to govern. The government has taken away the people's vote. We have to prove we are not dead.

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