Using the emergency powers granted by the IT Rules, 2021, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting issued orders on August 16, 2022, to prohibit eight YouTube-based news stations, one Facebook account, and two Facebook postings. The blocked YouTube channels have more than 114 crore total visitors and more than 85,00,000 subscribers.
Ministry Of I&B Blocks 8 YouTube Channels: Here’s What We Know So Far
Reports claiming the Indian government has ordered the destruction of religious institutions, prohibited the observance of religious holidays, initiated a religious war in India, etc. are examples of fake news. Such materials have been found to have the power to undermine the rule of law and promote strife among communities.
Additionally, bogus news on a variety of topics, including the Indian Armed Forces, Jammu and Kashmir, etc., were on YouTube channels. In terms of national security and India’s good relations with other States, the content was wholly untrue and sensitive.
The content that the Ministry restricted was harmful to India’s sovereignty and integrity, security, good ties with other countries, and domestic public order. As a result, the information was covered by section 69A of the Information Technology Act of 2000.
The prohibited Indian YouTube channels were employing sensationalized and false thumbnails, pictures of newscasters, and the logos of certain TV news programmes to trick viewers into thinking the news was real.
With this move, the Ministry has directed the shutdown of 102 YouTube-based news stations and many other social media accounts since December 2021. The Indian government is still protecting the integrity, sovereignty, international relations, and public order of India by fostering a trustworthy, safe, and legitimate online news media environment.