Earlier today, the Sri Lankan government lifted the temporary ban on social media platforms, which was imposed following the act of communal violence in Negombo, one of the Easter Sunday bombing sites. Restrictions were imposed on the usage of social media, after fighting between Sinhalese and Muslim clans broke out in Negombo.
The move was undertaken to prevent any further spread of rumours and falsification of facts, which may have threatened to turn the situation for the worse. The clash broke out over a personal dispute and later mobs stoned Muslim-owned shops and vandalized vehicles. Authorities had also imposed a curfew following the incident, and restricted access to the social media to stop the circulation of videos and images related to the Negombo incident. The announcement of lifting of the ban was made by the Information Department, the Daily Mirror reported.
This is the second time social media access was restricted in the island nation following the April 21 attacks which killed over 250 and injured hundreds. Meanwhile, state schools in Sri Lanka resumed classes on Monday amid tight security. That said, questions persist about how effective a social media ban truly is, in today's day and age.
Given the relevance and importance of social media in our society, banning it can also lean the other way, leaving the common people without a very powerful communication media, and essentially creating more panic and havoc to an extent. However, the ban does reinstate the importance of social media in today's world, and how it has a much bigger impact than being a casual part of the internet.
(with inputs from IANS)