The Indian government has blocked 35 YouTube channels and other social media accounts in the country it says are run by the Pakistani government as part of a coordinated ‘anti-India propaganda’ campaign.
“The YouTube channels, websites, and other social media accounts blocked by the ministry were used by Pakistan for spreading anti-India fake news about sensitive subjects related to India,” said a statement from India’s Information and Broadcasting Ministry.
The Ministry alleged that Apni Dunya Network, which operated 14 YouTube channels, and Talha Film Networks, which ran 13 YouTube channels, were involved in a misinformation campaign from Pakistan. An additional two Twitter accounts, two Instagram accounts, and a Facebook account were also banned. In all, the channels had a collected 1.2 billion subscribers.
“The common factor amongst all these accounts have been that they operate from Pakistan and spread fake anti-India news and other content. The blocked accounts have contents on Indian Armed Forces, Kashmir, India’s foreign relation with other countries, and the death of former [Chief of Defence Staff of the Indian Armed Forces] CDS Bipin Rawat,” claimed Vikram Sahay, the Joint Secretary for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
Earlier this month, Pakistan Foreign Office Spokesperson Asim Iftikhar reported that India was planning a ‘false flag‘ operation, coupled with incendiary remarks from the Indian government regarding terrorist outposts along the Line of Control (LoC).
“There is nothing new about the Indian General’s unfounded allegations, as these are a part of the malicious anti-Pakistan propaganda being peddled by the BJP-RSS [Bharatiya Janata Party-Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh] combine at the helm in India,” he said.