India says new IT fact-checking unit will not censor journalism

A proposed Indian government unit to fact-check news on social media is not about censoring journalism nor will it have any impact on media reportage, a federal minister said on Friday.

Recently amended IT regulation requires online platforms like Meta Platforms Inc’s Facebook and Twitter to “make reasonable efforts” to not “publish, share or host” any information relating to the government that is “fake, false or misleading”.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, India minister of state for IT, said in an online discussion it was “not true” that the government-appointed unit, which press freedom advocates strongly oppose, was aimed at “censoring journalism”.

The Editors Guild of India last week described the move as draconian and akin to censorship.

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