NEW DELHI: The Press Council of India (PCI) has sought comments from the Jammu and Kashmir government on the provisions of fake news in its media policy. This move interferes with the free functioning of the press, the council said while taking suo-motu cognisance of the issue.
The move would enable officers to decide what qualifies as fake news in print, electronic and other forms of media and act against journalists and media organisations, the PCI said.
“Taking note of the provisions regarding ‘fake news’ mentioned in the Media Policy 2020 whereby Govt of Jammu and Kashmir authorises its officers to decide on the content of print, electronic and their forms of media for ‘fake news’ and proceed against journalists and media organisations, the Press Council of India has moved suo-motu as the matter affects the free functioning of the press,” the council statement said.
The PCI had recently sought a report from the UP government on an FIR lodged against a journalist.According to a recently released report by watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF), India slipped two places in the World Press Freedom Index 2020 ranking 142 among 180 countries.
The RSF report said India’s ranking was ‘heavily affected’ by the situation in Kashmir. Referring to the abrogation of Article 370, the report said the government shut down fixed- line and mobile internet connections for several months.