India Mobilizes Against Cellphone Porn

NEW DELHI — While possessing adult-oriented content on a cellphone in India is not illegal, distribution is. Indian police are increasingly cracking down on mobile users who appear “intent to distribute” pornographic images.

Because viewing adult material in a public place qualifies under Indian law as distribution, police have been randomly stopping people bent over their cellphones to examine all the files contained there.

The rise in Indian multimedia messaging (MMS) porn has been spurred by a series of movies featuring what appears to be Indian actress Mallika Sherawat. Sherawat’s image was morphed with that of a Mexican porn actress and the resulting video has spread across the subcontinent and the world.

Sherawat holds the title for having kissed in a Hindi movie the maximum number of times. Both her bogus video and that of a tryst between two rising Bollywood stars have resulted in raids on Internet cafes across India and the arrest of hundreds of teens.

The furor over MMS porn began last year when a jilted boyfriend began peddling footage of his ex-girlfriend online. “The MMS Case” eventually resulted in the arrest of eBay’s chief of operations in India.