Kamlesh Vaswani, a lawyer, and activist in Indore, India, is very pissed off about the easy accessibility, of what he perceives to be pornography, to anyone inclined to view it on the internet. Recently, during a visit to a coffee café, while he was reviewing “important Supreme Court judgments,” he noticed, “rows of children surfing porn openly without a care in the world.” He thinks that watching porn leads to violence against women, including rape—he cites the fatal gang rape of a 23-year old student as a motivating force behind his failed petition to the India Supreme Court that called for the dramatic censorship of nude depictions that are even remotely arguably pornography. Meanwhile, the government, directed the India “Department of Telecommunications”, to ban 857 adult websites, an action that has led to a public outcry; critics of the ban have compared the intrusion into the private lives of India’s citizens as the “equivalent of what Taliban [and] Isis [are] doing to freedom”. Others have argued that the government should not ban porn, rather “ban men ogling, leering, brushing past, groping, molesting, abusing, humiliating and raping women. Ban non-consent. Not sex”. Still, others argued that the government was abridging the personal liberties of the people and wondered if the invasions would next turn to the “hijacking” of phones and televisions.
The BBC quotes Vaswani as saying that pornography is “worse than Hitler, worse than Aids, cancer or an epidemic. It is more catastrophic than a nuclear holocaust, and it must be stopped”. It is unclear how he can justify such erratic comparisons. Vaswani has also stumbled when pressed to connect the viewing of alleged pornographic sites to violent crime. Instead, he appears to be relying on some process of divination by merely concluding that the perpetrators of such crimes must be watching porn.
OUR FREE OPINION
What can we say– Kamlesh Vaswani is an uninformed wingnut. He cannot be taken seriously– the bar set for becoming a lawyer in India must be low.