New Delhi: Government asked social networking sites to block 1,299 web addresses or URLs to comply with court orders between January 2013 and January 2014, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.

“Social networking sites were requested to block 8, 21, 352 URLs during 2010, 2011 and 2012, respectively and 1,299 URLs up to 31 January 2014 including 2013 to comply with court orders," minister for communication and IT Kapil Sibal said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.

The minister informed the house that a total of 362 URLs (Uniform Resource Locators) were blocked in 2012 of which 312 URLs were blocked in a single instance at the time of exodus of North East people from different parts of the country.

“Further, a total of 62 URLs were blocked invoking process of the government under Section 69A during 2013. The webpages were hosting objectionable information and had the potential to disturb the public order in the country and block access to public in the country on the request of law enforcement agencies," Sibal added.

Section 69A of the IT Act, 2000 empowers government to block any information generated, transmitted, received, stored or hosted in any computer resource in interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognisable offence relating to the above.