In mid-November 2021, it was discovered by Atheist Republic’s legal council in India that our site, BlasphemousArt.com has been blocked by the Ministry of Electronics and Information (MeitY) in India. This is the latest attempt from the Government of India to completely cut off Indian non-believers’ access to Atheist Republic, the largest community of atheists in the world. To ascertain which specific internet service providers have blocked this website, Atheist Republic has distributed a survey to all of our consulates (local meet-up groups) in India. Initial results reveal that the website is blocked for some users in Delhi, Kerala, West Bengal, and two other states.
CAPTION: Screenshot of the notice that appears when trying to access BlasphemousArt.com, provided by an Indian user.
The ban of BlasphemousArt.com follows AtheistRepublic.com being blocked to Indian users on many different internet service providers (ISPs) also upon the order of MeitY, Facebook blocking the Atheist Republic Facebook page to all Indian users upon order of the government, the personal Facebook page of Atheist Republic’s founder, Armin Navabi, being blocked to all Indian users upon government order, and the Delhi High Court ordering Twitter to remove many tweets pertaining to Hinduism from the Atheist Republic Twitter account.
Beyond the government of India itself, many private citizens have taken it upon themselves to judicially harass and target Atheist Republic in order to exert their Hindu-nationalist agenda. This includes, having police reports filed against our organization and our leadership, numerous legal complaints and threats of lawsuits, attempts to sue Facebook, Twitter, and the MeitY itself for hosting our content, and including our tweets as evidence in a case that will be heard before the Supreme Court of India that seeks to create a government censorship body that will remove “fake news” and “hateful content.”
This recent blocking of our backup website BlasphemousArt.com reiterates the importance of subscribing to Atheist Republic’s newsletter. Atheist Republic could be removed from any and all social media or video platforms, as we are under the control of other companies and their terms of service. Our experience with Facebook has demonstrated that it simply takes the order of a hostile government to completely deny us access to an entire community of our members. However, no one can take away our mailing list, so if you want to ensure that you will always be informed of where you can find Atheist Republic’s communities and content, please subscribe to our newsletter here. As a gift, new subscribers get a free copy of the book Why There is No God by Armin Navabi, and a safe-for-work version of our weekly blasphemous art, for free!