BJP-run states 250% more prone to internet shutdown, finds new study
India saw 115 internet shutdowns in 2020, the highest number for any country in the world. Yemen, which reported the second highest number, saw just five shutdowns. But the problem isn’t uniform across India, a study has found.
The likelihood of internet shutdowns in states ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party is more than 250% higher than non-BJP ruled states, and the trend is only increasing over time, according to an analysis of data from 2012 to the first quarter of 2020 by Kris Ruijgrok, a political scientist at the University of Amsterdam.
Ruijgrok conducted the study as an Information Controls Fellow with the Open Technology Fund, an United States-based nonprofit that “aims to support global internet freedom technologies”…. This finding, the study concludes, “fits the general pattern of observed democratic backsliding under the BJP that has occurred at the national level since the party’s rise to power”.