India has a history of censoring web content in the name of social order. Some areas of the country have made liking blasphemous social media posts punishable with jail time, it has blocked sex sites and has arrested WhatsApp group members who have posted altered, unflattering photos of the prime minister, which is against the country’s law prohibiting fake news.
If the order to temporarily shut off the region’s internet had any effect, it wasn’t to prevent a disturbance of the peace. After the cult leader was found guilty, his followers violently protested the verdict, resulting in 38 deaths. Trains were also stopped from traveling to and from the states, schools and businesses were closed and security officers were sent to regain order. Internet and messaging services were restored this morning.