ICANN wants India to take lead in governance of the web

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India Head Samiran Gupta has called on India to take leadership role in governance of the web for being the largest democracy in the world and its heritage of “frugal” innovation and education.

There are various bodies that are framing set of rules and standards on the way ICANN should work after NTIA steps out but voice from India is not very strong, Gupta said.

“India is not limited to New Delhi only. There is need to involve large number of people, who are effected by Internet to have their say. Right now number is limited,” Gupta said.

He said new rules are being made and India should take initiative in having its say there.

“If you see BRIC countries, India is largest democracy. It does not carry baggage of Internet censorship. Then look at Digital India programme, which is growing to bring large number of Internet users on board. There is huge impact that India can have in global rules,” Gupta said.

India had third largest Internet user base at 243 million in 2014, as per industry estimates, after China and US. This is about eight per cent of the global user base.

The Internet penetration in the country is estimated to be around 19 per cent.

A non-profit body, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) manages website names globally.

It was set up by the US Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) under a contract, which expires on September 30.

NTIA has decided to step out of its role of ICANN overseer after the contract expires and it be managed by global community.