The government has announced that it has blocked more than 60 social media accounts, including YouTube channels and Facebook and Instagram accounts, for the past two months.
State Minister for Information and Broadcasting El Murugan, in response to further questions from the upper house, said the government is deeply concerned about freedom of speech and expression.
Asked about the crackdown on disseminated and anti-nationalist publishers, he said more than 60 accounts, including those on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, had been shut down.
“These YouTube channels are sponsored by Pakistan,” he said.
He said the Indian Press Council would be an independent body of law and a code of conduct for journalists. “Journalists must follow the code of conduct. In accordance with Section 14 of the Press Council Act, action must be taken wherever you do not comply. “We have acted on more than 150 cases,” he said.
Asked about his role in disseminating false news about the Techfog app, Murugan said the government had set up a fact-finding unit to respond to more than 30,000 questions.
He added that the department is also investigating the virus. According to an official statement, on January 21, the ministry ordered the closure of 35 YouTube news sites and two websites involved in the dissemination of anti-Indian fake news on digital media. In addition, two Twitter accounts, two Instagram accounts and one Facebook account were closed.
In December, 20 YouTube channels and two websites were blocked, the statement said.
In a written response to the Star question, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Takur said the government has a legal and institutional framework to combat false news.
In November 2011, a “Fact Verification Unit” was set up under the Ministry’s press office to detect false news and information sent by citizens via portal or email and WhatsApp. . Provides accurate information to the relevant questions when the unit is in contact with the central government or in other matters. The section also contains a Twitter account @PIBFactcheck and posts fake news, deleted and so on. The PIB Fact Sheet has so far answered 30,533 applicable questions.
For the print media, the Indian Press Council (PCI), established by the Press Council Act of 1978, provides for “rules of journalism” for compliance with the media. These regulations emphasize the principles of accuracy and fairness as well as pre-publication verification. PCI has issued special rules to prevent print media from publishing false or misleading news.
For electronic media, all television stations are required to comply with program code in accordance with the Cable Television Networks Act, 1995.
As a rule, programs should not contain defamatory, deliberate, false and misleading insults and half-truths.
For digital news, the government has introduced Information Technology (Mediation Guidelines and Digital Media Code of Conduct) regulations. On February 25, 2021, it announced the Code of Conduct for Digital News Publishers in accordance with the Information Technology Act 2000. .
“Appropriate action will be taken in the event of a breach of the rules, regulations, etc. “The government also advises the media from time to time to comply with the rules.”
(This story has not been edited by Davdiscor staff and is created from automated feeds.)