Taxpayers should not end up paying for fake news: I&B Minister


Kolkata: Highlighting the actions being taken by the government to tackle news outfits providing fake news, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Smriti Irani said taxpayers should not pay for fake news.

For newspapers, there is the Press Council of India which can be approached by any citizen or any establishments so that the council deals with such things, Irani said on Tuesday late evening at an interactive session here, organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce.

“Apart from Press Council of India, the ministry can be approached. When we investigate and find the news published in a newspaper indeed is fake, we inform the Press council to take action.

“We ensure that newspapers do not get advertisements from the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP), if they are printing fake news,” Irani said.

In case of fake news on the television, the industry has a self-regulatory body and the ministry passes on information about complaints of fake news broadcast by a particular channel, she said, adding that then regulatory body or the ministry asks the particular channel to take corrective actions.

“We have found inflammatory content on a radio channel and similarly, we cut off revenue streams for that radio channel. The taxpayers should not end up paying for fake news,” she said.

Responding to a query on fake news on social media, she said: “I do not think that the social media is a menace. Technology is a great leveller. If there is some wrong content out there, the people have the power to set the post right. That is the most democratic mean of communications that we can have.” (IANS)

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