March 24, 2023

Centre bans 20 YouTube channels, 2 websites for spreading ‘anti-India propaganda’ | India News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: The ministry of information and broadcasting on Tuesday ordered the blocking of 20 channels on YouTube and 2 websites spreading “anti-India propaganda” and fake news on the internet.
The Centre issued two separate orders – one for 20 YouTube channels directing YouTube, and the other for 2 news websites, requesting the telecom department to direct the internet service providers for blocking of the news channels/portals.
“The channels and websites belong to a coordinated disinformation network operating from Pakistan and spreading fake news about various sensitive subjects related to India,” the information and broadcasting ministry said in a statement.
“The channels were used to post divisive content in a coordinated manner on topics like Kashmir, Indian Army, minority communities in India, Ram Mandir, General Bipin Rawat, etc,” it added.
The channels had a combined subscriber base of over 35 lakh, and their videos had over 55 crore views.
“The modus operandi of the anti-India disinformation campaign involved The Naya Pakistan Group (NPG), operating from Pakistan, having a network of YouTube channels, and some other standalone YouTube channels not related to NPG,” the Centre said.
The ministry further noted that these YouTube channels had also posted content on issues such as the farmers’ protest, protests related to the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, and “tried to incite the minorities against the government.”
“It was also feared that these YouTube channels would be used to post content to undermine the democratic process of the upcoming elections in five states,” the ministry said.

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