Important to know who is creating tension under fact-checking garb, says I&B Minister

Without naming anyone, Anurag Thakur also criticised some Opposition leaders for creating doubts among the public regarding COVID-19 vaccines and the Agnipath scheme.

July 21, 2022 04:47 pm | Updated 11:55 pm IST - New Delhi

Sports Minister Anurag Thakur. File

Sports Minister Anurag Thakur. File | Photo Credit: R. V. Moorthy

Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur on Thursday said that lawful action had been taken on complaints against those who attempted to create tension in the society on the pretext of fact-checking. 

Responding to a query from Rajya Sabha Member Manoj Kumar Jha of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), in an apparent reference to Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair, Mr. Thakur said: “It is also important to know who is the fact-checker and who is trying to create tension in the society under the garb of checking facts.”

"If someone complains against them, then action is taken according to the law,” he said.

Mr. Jha had earlier said that while fact-checkers were being proceeded against, no strict action was being taken against those indulging in hate speech. 

The Union Minister said that in 2021-22, strong action had been taken against the YouTube channels “working against the interest of the country”. Responding to a question in the Rajya Sabha, he said the Ministry had acted against 94 YouTube channels, 19 social media accounts and 747 URLs, and had them blocked. “These actions have been taken under the Section 69A of the Information Technology Act,” he said.

The Minister said that the government had clamped down on the agencies working against the sovereignty of the country by spreading fake news and spreading propaganda on the Internet.

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