On the basis of the argument made by the central government’s counsel, a division bench of the Kerala High Court’s Chief Justice S. Manikumar and Justice. Murali Purushothaman disposed the PIL on the grounds that the petitioner can approach the messaging service’s grievance officer in accordance with the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, to have offensive content removed.
A woman filed the PIL, alleging that the Telegram was circulating offensive content featuring images of children and women on the messaging application.
“Telegram was also being used to promote terrorism and was creating disharmony in society. Telegram has no nodal officer or a registered office in India and investigating agencies were unable to ensure proper investigation as the users are not required to disclose their identity on the application,” the PIL stated.
The central government’s legal counsel also pointed out that, in addition to filing a grievance with the intermediary platform’s grievance officer, the petitioner also has the option of lodging a complaint with the appropriate law enforcement agency or the cybercrime cell for any criminal acts that are cognizable under the IPC or other applicable laws.
The central government counsel advised the petitioner to report cybercrime through the Cybercrime Reporting Portal.