Centre blocked 122 YouTube-based news channels since December 2021, says Anurag Thakur
Union minister Anurag Thakur said all private satellite television channels are required to adhere to the norms under the Cable TV Networks (Regulation) Act.
The Narendra Modi government on Thursday said it has blocked 122 YouTube-based news channels since 2021 as they carried content related to the sovereignty and integrity of the country.
Responding to a question by Aam Aadmi Party MP Sanjeev Arora who asked about the steps taken by the Centre to shut fake news channels, Union minister for information and broadcasting Anurag Thakur said,"Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has, since December, 2021, issued directions for blocking from public access of 122 YouTube based news channels for carrying content violative of section 69A of IT Act, 2000 in the interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to the above."
“For electronic media, all private satellite television channels are inter-alia required to adhere to the Programme Code laid down under the Cable TV Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 in respect of content broadcast by them. The Act also provides for a three tier grievance redressal mechanism for addressing grievances relating to the violation of the Codes by the TV channels. Appropriate action is taken where violation of the Codes is found,” the minister said.
In reply to a separate question, the minister said the government has placed the draft Broadcasting Services (Regulation) Bill, 2023, that seeks to replace the existing Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995, and Guidelines regulating the broadcasting sector.
The bill stipulates regulatory processes, introduces contemporary definitions and provisions for emerging technologies, and seeks to strengthen the self-regulatory regime for content regulation.
Thakur said the ministry of Information and Broadcasting has invited feedback and comments from stakeholders, including domain experts and the general public, on the draft bill.
(With PTI inputs)