Action against 160 TV channels for anti-India content: MIB

The government on Thursday said it was concerned about the freedom of speech and expression and that the country was not in the times of 1975 or the Emergency.

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The government on Thursday said it was concerned about the freedom of speech and expression and that the country was not in the times of 1975 or the Emergency.

The government had initiated action against 160 TV channels and blocked 60 channels on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter pages as their content was against the integrity and safety of the nation.

Replying to supplementary query by opposition member KC Venugopal, who alleged that the government was misusing penal provisions to curb the freedom of speech and expression, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting L Murugan said, “Our government is concerned about the freedom of speech and expression… We are not in Emergency.”

The minister also noted that the Press Council of India and a three-tier mechanism was in place to check the content.

Asked about the action against MediaOne channel, the minister said, “We are not doing anything on MediaOne. Whatever permissions to channels are being given (are) after the Home Ministry gives security clearance. MediaOne matter is sub-judice.”

Minister of State said: “Within two months, our government initiated action against 60 channels on social media, including YouTube and Facebook and Twitter, whose contents were against the nation and against the integrity and safety of the nation. We cannot tolerate it.”

In a written reply to a separate question, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said all programmes telecast on private satellite TV channels were required to adhere to the programme code laid down in Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994.

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