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Congress protest on net neutrality, asks Centre to stop TRAI move

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New Delhi: Stepping up offensive on the net neutrality issue, Congress today staged a protest here alleging that the move by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) was against public interest and the Centre should stop it.

The TRAI had floated a public consultation paper on net neutrality seeking to know public views with today being the last day of submitting responses. The principle of net neutrality calls for equal treatment to be accorded to all internet traffic, without discrimination or priority for any person, entity or company.

Members of All India Youth Congress, National Students Union of India (NSUI) and functionaries of Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee gathered at Jantar Mantar here supporting freedom to access internet without any discrimination and demanded that rights of the consumers be protected.

The issue was raised by Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi in Lok Sabha two days ago.

Leading the protest, Congress’ Delhi unit chief Ajay Maken alleged that the Centre was trying to empower corporates and telecom companies.

“What we think is why internet companies and telecom operators should have right to decide if we should use whatsapp, facebook or twitter or buy (anything) from flipkart or amazon. This right should be with consumer. Internet companies and private companies should not have this right.

“The Government wants to empower corporate sector and private companies to decide what we should use or not. Our fight is for consumers’ right and rights of the common man,” Maken said addressing the press here.

Referring to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997, he said Section 25 of the law gives power to the Centre to direct TRAI on any issue concerning public interest.

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