The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has blocked 16 YouTube news channels for spreading disinformation related to India’s national security, foreign relations and public order, the Centre said on Monday.
The Centre added that these channels were spreading false and unverified information to create panic, incite communal disharmony and disturb public order in India.
Out of the 16 blocked YouTube news channels, 10 are from India and six are Pakistan-based.
They had a total viewership of over 68 crore.
Earlier this month, the Information and Broadcasting Ministry blocked 22 YouTube channels for the same reason.
According to a press release issued by the Centre, a total of 22 YouTube channels including 4 Pakistan-based YouTube news channels have also were blocked.
The blocked YouTube channels had a cumulative viewership of over 260 crore, and were used to spread fake news, and coordinated disinformation over social media on subjects sensitive from the perspective of national security, India’s foreign relations, and public order, the release said.
This was for the first time that action was taken on the YouTube based news publishers since the notification of the IT Rules, 2021 in February last year.