Citing security reasons, the home ministry has rejected Google’s plans to cover Indian cities, tourists spots, hills and rivers through the Google Street View in which one can explore through 360-degree, panoramic and street-level imagery.
The ministry has conveyed the decision to Google.
The security establishment’s caution stems from fear that image capturing could aid terrorists. Pakistani-American David Coleman Headley is said to have undertaken a photographic reconnaissance of the targets ahead of the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
According to the officials the rejection came after a detailed analysis by security agencies and defence forces which feel that allowing Google to cover India would compromise country’s security interest.
Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said once the proposed Geospatial Information Regulation Bill, 2016 comes into force, issues related to internet-based application would be resolved.
The internet services giant wanted to cover most of the Indian territory through the Google Street View.
It has been extensively used in the United States, Canada and many European countries. It was initially permitted in India for a few locations. It explores places around the world through 360-degree, panoramic and street-level 3D imagery.
Every image recorded is posted online.
Google had on an experimental basis launched Street View in some of the tourist sites such as Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Qutub Minar, Varanasi river bank, Nalanda University, Mysore Palace, Thanjavur temple, Chinnaswamy stadium besides others in partnership with the Archaeological Society of India.
Google Street View is a technology featured in Google Maps and Google Earth that provides panoramic views from positions along many streets in the world.
It was first launched in several cities in the US in 2007and has since expanded to include cities and rural areas worldwide.
Most photography is done by a car, but some is done by trekker, tricycle, walking, boat, snowmobile, camel, and underwater apparatus.