Mumbai: Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur has warned that any website or YouTube channel “hatching conspiracy against India and spreading lies” will be blocked.
“I had ordered action against them. I am happy that many big countries across the world have taken cognisance of it. YouTube also came forward and took action to block them,” Thakur told the media while replying to queries on the issue.
In close coordination with intelligence agencies, the I&B ministry in December 2021 ordered the blocking of 20 YouTube channels and two websites for allegedly spreading anti-India propaganda and fake news.
“And in future also, action will be taken against India to block any account of conspiracy, spreading lies and dividing the society,” the minister said.
Earlier, the ministry had said that these 20 YouTube channels and websites belong to “a coordinated propaganda network operating out of Pakistan”.
In a statement, the ministry had said that the channels were used to share divisive content in a coordinated manner on topics such as Kashmir, Indian Army, minority communities in India, Ram temple, (late CDS) General Bipin Rawat etc.
The 20 YouTube channels that were ordered to be blocked were run by The Naya Pakistan Group (NPG), which operates out of Pakistan. NPG has a network of YouTube channels with at least 3.5 million subscribers. The ministry had reported that his video has been viewed more than 550 million times.
“Some YouTube channels of NPG were operated by anchors of Pakistani news channels,” it said.
The 20 channels included International Web News, Khalsa TV, The Punch Line, 48 news, The Naked Truth, News 24, Fictional Historical Facts, Punjab Viral, Naya Pakistan Global and Cover Story.
In addition to the channels, the Kashmir Global and Kashmir Watch websites were completely blocked.