The recent arrest of two internet centre owners for allegedly selling pornographic clips to youngsters looks a routine case. Sleuths of the Commissioner’s Task Force raided the two centres and found the accused downloading the video clips online and transferring them to mobile phones for a price.

But with internet usage increasingly going mobile, downloading obscene video clips requires no internet centre. What makes them potential centres of crime is the possibility of other offences like the theft of sensitive data of those who use the internet for financial transactions.

Even members of terrorist modules had been using these centres for communicating with their handlers abroad or accomplices operating from other parts of the country. Realising this, police had instructed field officers to ensure the Internet centre owners keep a record of visitors using internet.

A register containing the name and contact details of the person should be maintained. None should be allowed to use the internet without an identity proof was another instruction. While the police would crack whip on errant managements during the early days, they have now given up inspections of internet kiosks, leaving scope for their misuse.

No minor crime this

The victims of increasing incidence of chain snatching and sexual assaults, women are soft targets for crime in the city.

The sexual harassment of a minor – a second-year Intermediate student – by another, a first-year student, and three of his friends in Karkhana, raised fresh questions about the disturbing attacks on women.

On receipt of the complaint, police assumed history-sheeters could have been behind the incident.

However, to their dismay, two minors and two others – a few months older to the first two – turned out to be responsible for the attack.

The victim was introduced to the first-year Inter student through a friend. They would chat on a social networking site every now and then.

Objecting to the minor’s advances, she deleted his name from her “friends list”. Furious, the minor and three of his friends intercepted her while she was returning home from college and tried to attack her. They beat a fast retreat when passers-by bashed them up, but a few hours later, they were brazen enough to attack her house and damage the furniture.

While the police acted swiftly by picking up the accused, the message will be loud and clear only when convictions are secured.

ASIF YAR KHAN, MARRI RAMU; (hyderabaddesk@thehindu.co.in)

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