I&B Ministry Blocks 16 Youtube News Channels For Spreading Disinformation

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I&B Ministry Blocks 16 Youtube News Channels For Spreading Disinformation


On Monday, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting issued directions for blocking sixteen YouTube-based news channels and one Facebook account by utilizing the emergency powers under the IT Rules, 2021.

According to a statement, the blocked social media accounts include six Pakistan-based and ten India-based YouTube news channels, having a cumulative viewership of over 68 crore.

The channels were used to spread fake news over social media on matters related to national security, India’s foreign relations, communal harmony in the country, and public order. None of the digital news publishers had furnished information to the Ministry as required under rule 18 of the IT Rules, 2021.

Ministry of Information & Broadcasting stated that the content published by some of the India based YouTube channels referred to a community as terrorists, and incited hatred among the members of various religious communities. Such content was found to have the potential to create communal disharmony, and disturb public order.

Multiple India based YouTube channels were observed to publish unverified news and videos having the potential to create panic among various sections of the society.

Examples include false claims related to announcement of a pan-India lockdown due to COVID-19 thereby threatening the migrant workers, and fabricated claims alleging threats to certain religious communities, etc.

YouTube channels based in Pakistan were found to have been used in a coordinated manner to post fake news about India on various subjects such as the Indian Army, Jammu and Kashmir, and India’s foreign relations in the light of situation in Ukraine, etc. The content of these channels was observed to be completely false, and sensitive from the perspective of national security, sovereignty and integrity of India, and India’s friendly relations with foreign States.


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