Cyber cafes in Kathmandu told to dismantle cabins

Kathmandu, December 20:

Following increasing complaints by guardians that young students were involved in illicit activities behind the closed curtains of cyber cafes mushrooming in the city, the police

has warned of disallowing such cabins.

“We will take action against the cyber station owners in Kathmandu if they failed to dismantle their cabins in a few days,” SP Navaraj Silwal, chief of the Metropolitan Police Range, Hanumandhoka, told this daily today.

He said the police had found the Internet Service Providers hosting some 15 pornographic sites. “We have told the cyber owners that their centres should be wide and open so that no one can indulge in illicit activities,” he said, adding that their instructions had not been obeyed for long.

A few months ago, the MPR had called cyber station representatives and urged them to block pornographic sites and dismantle cabins. “The representatives had expressed written commitment to the police on gradually dismantling the cabins of the cyber stations but did not mention the time frame,” said inspector Prajit KC of MPR.

He said the police had also asked the cyber owners to record the names of the people visiting their stations, along with their purpose of visit. Pawan Shakya of World Link, one of the prominent ISPs, was also present during the meeting called by the MPR.

He also said the owners of the cyber stations

with STD and ISD services were asked to keep the record of the numbers dialled from their shops to help the police in tracking down criminals.

“Most of the time, criminals use public telephones for threat calls and criminal activities,” he said. KC said the police would monitor the activities of cyber cafes with their surprise checks once in a while.

SP Silwal said around 1,000 cyber stations were in operation in Kathmandu district with cabins.

“We just want to regulate the cyber stations so that young students would not misuse the internet and pollute their young minds,” Silwal added.