The titles of newly blocked YouTube channels -- U&V TV, AM Razvi, Loktantra TV, SeeTop5TH, Gouravshali Pawan Mithilanchal, Sab Kuch Dekho and Sarkari Update -- might appear innocuous; however, they were working for nefarious purposes & spread misinformation regarding India's foreign relations, national security and posing a threat to public order in the nation.
Centre Bans More Media Outlets
The information and broadcasting ministry (I&B), using the emergency powers under the IT Rules, 2021, released orders to ban these channels along with three other channels, including a digital outlet -- News ki Dunya -- which are being operated from Pakistan. The order was issued on August 16, and the action was taken after intelligence agencies' specific inputs; reported The New Indian Express.
The ministry officials also revealed that the blocked channels had a cumulative viewership of more than 114 crores and more than 85 lakh subscribers.
Meanwhile, restrictions have been put on the Facebook page of 'Loktantra TV' for viewing in India with two different posts on the social media platform, revealed the ministry on August 18.
Security & Fake News
All these blocked channels are accused of making fake news regarding the Centre ordering the demolition of religious structures, banning the celebration of religious festivals, and 'declaration of religious war in India'.
"The purpose of the content published by some of these YouTube channels was to spread hatred among religious communities in India. False claims were made in various videos by the blocked YouTube channels. Such content was found to have the potential to create communal disharmony and disturb public order in the country," the ministry officials stated.
These YouTube channels were being used to spread fake news regarding the Indian Armed Forces and Jammu & Kashmir. The I&B ministry officials added that the blocked channels on YouTube were monetising fake news content.
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