Wednesday, May 29, 2024

‘Bolta Hindustan’ YouTube channel removed on Union govt’s orders

The YouTube channel of Bolta Hindustan, an independent Hindi news portal, was removed from the Google-owned platform on Thursday at the behest of the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

The channel had about 2,98,000 subscribers.

The correspondence addressed to Bolta Hindustan by YouTube says that its channel was taken down in compliance with directions from the information and broadcasting ministry under Rule 15 (2) of the Information Technology Rules, 2021. Rule 15 (2) gives the power to an officer authorised by the information and broadcasting ministry to direct social media platforms to block content.

The Bolta Hindustan has stated that it was only in 2023 that they could set up a YouTube channel which brought their news to a wider audience and by March 2024, they had accumulated nearly 80 million views and gained around 300,000 subscribers, a remarkable number. However, after receiving a notice by Google on April 3, the channel was shut down the following day.

In a video shared on X, Bolta Hindustan’s editor Samar Raj has asked whether the content of Bolta Hindustan is more dangerous than the communal environment created by those in power.

Raj said that the portal is considering its legal options.

Several people on X have written in support of the media portal, using the hashtag #RestoreBoltaHindustanYT.

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