KSRTC Kerala asks Sujith Bhakthan – blogger to shut down ksrtcblog.com

The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) has asked the private blogger, Sujith Bhakthan, who handles www.ksrtcblog.com to remove all the content hosted on the website. The blog contains news and information regarding state transport services, schemes and other details. KSRTC has cited that the blog has third party advertisements and derogatory content that might tarnish the image of the corporation. It has also asked the blogger to refrain from using the acronym from the website.

ksrtc blogger sujith bhakthan

KSRTC Chairman and Managing Director Antony Chacko has sent a notice to Bhakthan, asking him to refrain from using the name KSRTC on the website. “You have been maintaining a website namely www.ksrtcblog.com for the past 5-6 years. Pursuant to your request letter dated 04-01-2010, we had permitted you to take photographs of Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses for hosting the same in the website. It has come out that you are hosting third party advertisements through the website. You are also making available services and information for the benefit of third party competitors to KSRTC through your website for commercial gain,” reads the letter.

When International Business Times, India contacted Bhakthan, he said, “KSRTC cannot claim the usage of the acronym KSRTC as they still do not own it due to the battle with Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation. I have also consulted with concerned people, who claimed that I can use the term ksrtcblog for the blog.” When asked what might have irked the authorities, he added, “They never supported us. Once they gave us the permission to take photos of KSRTC. But we did not renew it after two years. We recently wrote about the scams and issues related to KSRTC and that might have provoked them now.”

The letter sent by KSRTC to Bhakthan also points out that the website carries disrespectful content against the corporation. “It has further come out that you have been uploading contents, prima facie derogatory to the best interests of KSRTC. It is hereby brought to your attention that KSRTC has taken serious note of your malicious and illegal activities. The Corporation cannot be expected to sit over attempts to tarnish and dilute the goodwill and reputation of the mark KSRTC, which forms an integral asset to the Corporation,” the letter further reads.

Bhakthan has posted the notice sent by the authorities on his Facebook page, asking his followers on what he must do as the Corporation has warned him of legal action if the blog is not shut down. The ksrtcblog.com also has a sub-blog, aanavandi.com, that gives the bus timings of KSRTC bus services in and outside Kerala.

When IBTimes India contacted KSRTC officials, they confirmed sending the notice to Sujith.