Develop digital forensic infrastructure to deal with Dark Web: NHRC chief

"At the same time, we must ensure the digital divide is not there," he said.

New Delhi: National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chairperson Justice Arun Kumar Mishra on Sunday expressed concern about the Dark Web and the threat it poses to society, adding that there is a need to develop a digital forensic infrastructure to deal with it.

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Speaking at a Constitution Day event here, the former Supreme Court judge also said that public interest litigations (PILs) should not be used for political purposes.

“We live in the digital era which is helpful for progress and development. There is a phenomenon of increasing the number of internet users. However, 96 per cent of the cyberspace is the Dark Web. It is used for criminal purposes such as exploitation of children, destroying the right to privacy, modern slavery, trafficking, and demanding ransom by data hacking…it must be stopped,” the NHRC chief said.

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“We must invest and develop a broad-based digital forensic infrastructure to tackle the misuse of cyberspace and criminal commerce. At the same time we have to ensure the digital divide is not there,” he said.

Noting that several reforms have been brought in through PILs, Mishra said, “PIL is useful, however its misuse for political purpose must stop.”

He also said that to ensure that the goal of the Constitution is achieved, violence-free elections must be ensured.

“Violence has no place in the democratic process. Fair election is recognised as a human right,” he said.

“The time has come to distinguish between the promise made to voters to create an egalitarian social order…and when freebies promised will be equal to luring voters by forbidden means in election. The same needs to be determined at the appropriate level and forum, if necessary by specific legislation,” he said.

Talking about gender equality, the human rights panel chief said the time has come to define the phrase “gender equality”.

“Women are still discriminated against, they should enjoy the same rights,” he said.

Mishra also said the Constitution enshrines the spirit of ‘Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam’ (world is one family) and added it has secured our past and present and will ensure a better future for the generations to come.

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