Karnataka govt shares details of fact checking unit to curb misinformation
Kharge explained that the newly formed unit is responsible for conducting fact-checks on content and recommending appropriate actions, if inaccuracies are identified
A day after filing an FIR against a Hindi news channel anchor for spreading misinformation, Karnataka’s IT-BT minister Priyank Kharge, on Thursday, shared details about Karnataka’s fact-check unit.
Addressing the media on Thursday, the minister explained that the newly formed unit is responsible for conducting fact-checks on content and recommending appropriate actions, if inaccuracies are identified.
To ensure its seamless operation, an oversight committee has also been established, featuring prominent figures from various sectors. “This committee includes the head of the IT department, the Intelligence ADGP [assistant director general of police], representatives from the Department of Information and Public Relations [DIPR], the additional advocate general, the centre head of Cyber Security Unit, and representatives from civil society,” he said.
Kharge said that the fact-checking unit’s mission is not to regulate or control information. “We are not here to regulate or control individuals or the media. Our sole focus is fact-checking content disseminated across various platforms,” he said.
The IT-BT minister also highlighted deliberate misinformation campaigns orchestrated by certain institutions and political parties. “Some institutions and parties engage in spreading fake news through media, social media, and word of mouth, deliberately misleading people and sowing confusion in society to further their agendas,” he said.
“Fact-checking will be conducted in multiple languages, including Kannada, English, and other regional languages. We will rely on primary sources wherever available and ensure transparency by disclosing all sources referenced. In cases of ambiguous facts, the unit will provide all available unambiguous information and transparently correct any inaccuracies as new facts emerge,” he added.
Kharge reassured the public that all actions taken by the unit would adhere to relevant legal frameworks, including the IT Act 2000, IT Act amendments 2008, the Indian Penal Code, and the Disaster Management Act 2005.