India’s ranking in the Press Freedom Index compiled by the Reporters Without Borders fell for consecutive years and it is now ranked 131 out of 179 countries. Classifying India (along with Indonesia, Mongolia and Maldives) as “causes for concern”, the report states:
“In India (131st), journalists were exposed to violence stemming from the persistent conflicts in the states of Chhattisgarh and Jammu and Kashmir. The threat from mafia groups operating in the main cities of the country also contributed to self-censorship. However, the authorities were no better. In May, the unveiled the “Information Technology Rules 2011″, which have dangerous implications for online freedom of expression. Foreign reporters saw their visa requests turned down or were under pressure to provide positive coverage”
These findings assume greater significance in light of the recent debate about freedom of speech in the country.
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