Stories about South-Asia

Students arrested for demanding internet facilities in Balochistan

A number of students were manhandled, baton-charged and arrested in Quetta, Balochistan, for protesting against non-availability of internet after their classes shifted online due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Pakistan blocks Twitter, Zoom and Periscope to curb critical voices

In mid-May, Twitter, Zoom and Persicope were either blocked or throttled across Pakistan. Activists say the move was meant to target a few web conferences on human rights issues.

In Bangladesh, criticism of government response to the COVID-19 pandemic is risky

"Would it be wrong if someone says that the authorities in Bangladesh, equipped with Digital Security Act, launched a crackdown on those critical to the government?"

After disappearing for 53 days, Bangladeshi journalist is found and sent to jail

Fifty-three days after his abduction in from of his office in Dhaka, Bangladesh, photojournalist Shafiqul Islam Kajol was found alive in Benapole, near the border of Bangladesh with India.

Baloch journalist found dead in Sweden

In recent months, several Pakistani activists and bloggers living in Europe have claimed to have been targeted for speaking up against human rights violations in Pakistan.

Coronavirus and surveillance technology in India: Public health vs. privacy

Global Voices interviewed rights lawyer Mishi Choudhary and tech and policy researcher Srinivas Kodali to discuss the newest proposal in India to use unique ID data for #FacialRecognition with drones.

Fighting the COVID-19 ‘Infodemic’ in the Asia-Pacific

EngageMedia lists some of the media initiatives addressing the COVID-19 "Infodemic' across the Asia-Pacific region

Is India fighting COVID-19 the “mass surveillance” way?

"There isn’t enough information available on what data will be collected, how long will it be stored and what uses it will be put to."

Internet shutdowns in 2019: India continued to top list of worst offenders

In 2019, access to the internet was disrupted 121 times in India alone, says Access Now in a new report.

For Rohingya refugees, ID systems have brought coercion, violence and denial of ethnic identity

"They told us they would withhold rations and that we couldn’t stay in the camps. So we had no choice."

Pakistan's draconian rules on social media take activists by surprise

The new rules require social media companies to hand over user information and remove content deemed unlawful when requested by the authorities.

#MarginalizedAadhaar: Is India's Aadhaar enabling more exclusion in social welfare for marginalized communities?

India's biometric-based digital ID Aadhaar seems to bring more exclusion to marginalized communities rather than solving it.

What do we know about the ‘Great Firewall of India’?

After a six-month-long internet shutdown, access to only 301 white-listed websites has been granted in Jammu and Kashmir, whereas social media, VPNs and many other sites remain banned.

Manzoor Pashteen, the young activist who challenged Pakistan's military over human rights abuses, is arrested

Manzoor Ahmad Pashteen, a young a human rights activist from South Waziristan, Pakistan, has been arrested for alleged conspiracy and sedition.

Baul singer Shariat Sarkar arrested in Bangladesh for ‘insulting’ Islam

Baul singer Shariat Sarkar is accused of making comments which hurt the “religious sentiment” of Muslims. He says that there is no evidence forbidding music in Islam.

Supreme Court of India declares internet ban in Jammu and Kashmir unconstitutional

The blockout, imposed since August 2019, has affected the lives of millions of people in Jammu and Kashmir, depriving them of the basic right to access the internet.

‘A disturbing crackdown on press freedom’: Pakistan arbitrarily blocking Slate.com

This is the second time that the website has been blocked in Pakistan in 2019, and the third time since 2018.

Pakistan shuts art installation depicting extrajudicial killings

"The closure is both an attack on free expression and an attempt to sweep under the rug a longstanding human rights problem."

India partially lifts communications blackout in Kashmir, internet still down

According to a recent report, Kashmiris are resisting the clampdowns and shutdowns imposed by the Indian Central Government “through satyagraha or non-violent civil disobedience”.

Bangladesh Regulator blocks engineering university web page containing reports of student abuse

The Telecommunication Regulatory Commission blocked an online page where over 175 complaints were anonymously made by current and former students of the top engineering university of the country.

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