The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has directed YouTube to block 45 videos of 10 YouTube channels based on information from intelligence agencies. The videos that have been blocked had a cumulative viewership of over 1 crore 30 lakh views. The order was passed under the provision of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021.

“The content included fake news and morphed videos spread with the intent to spread hatred among religious communities, such as false claims about Government having taken away the religious rights of certain communities, violent threats against religious communities, and declaration of civil war in India among others,” the Ministry said in a statement.

These videos were found to have the potential to cause “communal disharmony” and disrupt public order .

“Some of the videos blocked by the Ministry were used to spread disinformation on issues related to the Agnipath scheme, the Indian Armed Forces, India’s national security apparatus and Kashmir. The content was observed to be false and sensitive from the perspective of national security and India’s friendly relations with foreign States,” it added.

Some of these videos also displayed an erroneous external boundary, with parts of J&K and Ladakh outside the Indian territory. Such cartographic misrepresentation was found to be detrimental to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India, it added.

In the past, the Ministry has blocked over 100 YouTube channels, besides other social media accounts for showcasing content that was found to be detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of the country. “The Government of India remains committed to thwart any attempts at undermining India’s sovereignty and integrity, national security, foreign relations, and public order,” the statement added.

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