In response to a separate question, the union minister said the Fact Check Unit of the Press Information Bureau has busted more than 1,160 fake news…reports Asian Lite News
The central government has issued directions for blocking 110 YouTube-based news channels and 248 URLs since December, 2021 for carrying content against the sovereignty of the country, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur said.
In a written reply to the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Parliament, Thakur also said the National Crime Records Bureau did not maintain any separate data on journalists.
The minister was responding to a question put by Congress member Pradyut Bordoloi who had sought details and the number of journalists arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act (UAPA), Indian Penal Code and other penal laws during the last five years and the current year, news agency PTI reported.
Thakur said that ‘Police’ and ‘Public Order’ are state subjects under the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution of India and state governments are responsible for prevention, detection and investigation of crimes and for prosecuting the criminals through their law enforcement agencies.
He said the Ministry has issued directions for blocking access of 110 YouTube-based news channels and 248 user generated URLs, including webpages, websites, posts/accounts on social media platforms, podcasts, and apps for carrying content referred to section 69A of the IT Act, 2000.
In response to a separate question, the union minister said the Fact Check Unit of the Press Information Bureau has busted more than 1,160 fake news, it was reported.
The minister said the Fact Check Union takes cognizance of news both suo-motu and by way of queries sent by citizens, the report added.
Thakur on Sunday indicated that the government has taken a serious note of rising complaints about increasing abusive and obscene content shown on over the top (OTT) platforms and if need arises, it may change rules governing them.
Addressing a press conference in Nagpur, Thakur said: “Abusive language in the name of creativity will not be tolerated. The government is serious about the complaints of increasing abusive and obscene content on OTT platforms. If there is a need to make any changes in the rules regarding this, the ministry is willing to consider that.”
He further said that “these platforms were given freedom for creativity, not obscenity”.
“Whatever necessary action needs to be taken on this, the government will not back down from it,” he said.
“The process so far is that the producer has to resolve the received complaints at the first level. Around 90 per cent to 92 per cent of the complaints are resolved by them by making necessary changes. The next level of complaint resolution is at the level of their association, where most of the complaints are resolved. At the last level, it comes to the level of the government, where action is taken at the departmental committee level, according to the rules that are in place.
“… but complaints have started increasing in the last few days and the department is taking it very seriously. If there is a need to make a change, we are willing to consider it seriously,” Thakur said.
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