New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Thursday voiced serious concern over the running of fake news on social media platforms and web portals, and said even news shown in a section of channels bears a communal tone, which may bring a bad name to the country.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana was hearing a batch of petitions including the one filed by Jamiat Ulema-i-Hind seeking directions to the Centre to stop the dissemination of "fake news" related to a religious gathering at the Markaz Nizamuddin and take strict action against those responsible for it.

The bench also comprising Justices Surya Kant and AS Bopanna observed that the content shown in a section of private media bears a communal tone. The Chief Justice told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, "Ultimately, this country is going to get a bad name. Have you made an attempt for a self-regulatory mechanism (for these private channels)?".

Social media only listens to “the powerful voices” and several things are written against judges, institutions without any accountability, said the bench which also comprised justices Surya Kant and A S Bopanna.

"There is no control over fake news and slandering in web portals and YouTube channels. If you go to YouTube, you will find how fake news is freely circulated and anyone can start a channel on YouTube," it said.

Mehta submitted before the bench that the Centre has come out with new Information and Technology rules, which address concerns flagged by the top court. He added that many petitions have been filed challenging the new rules in various high courts. Mehta submitted that the Centre has filed a plea to transfer all these petitions to the Supreme Court.

The Chief Justice added that the social media platforms do not respond if an issue is raised in connection with the content. "I have not come across any public channel, Twitter, Facebook or YouTube", the CJI said.

"They never respond to us and there is no accountability, about the institutions they have written badly about, and they don't respond and say this is their right. Do not know who to approach...they are only concerned with the people who are powerful... judges, common man, they are not bothered", he added.

 

(With Agencies Inputs)

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan