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Government blocks 18 OTT platforms for obscene content following minister's warning

19 Websites, 10 Apps, 57 Social Media Handles of OTT platforms blocked nationwide
05:00 PM Mar 14, 2024 IST | GK NEWS SERVICE
government blocks 18 ott platforms for obscene content following minister s warning
Government blocks 18 OTT platforms for obscene content following minister's warning --- Representational Photo
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New Delhi, Mar 14: In a move against the proliferation of obscene and vulgar content, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (I&B) has announced the blocking of 18 Over-The-Top (OTT) platforms across India.

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This crackdown comes after repeated warnings from Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting, Anurag Singh Thakur, urging platforms to uphold decency standards.

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The action, coordinated with various intermediaries, has led to the disabling of 19 websites, 10 apps (7 on Google Play Store, 3 on Apple App Store), and 57 associated social media handles. Minister Thakur, emphasising the responsibility of platforms, declared the takedown on March 12, 2024.

The decision to block these platforms was made under the provisions of the Information Technology Act, of 2000, in consultation with relevant government ministries/departments and domain experts in media, entertainment, women's rights, and child rights.

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The list of blocked OTT platforms includes Dreams Films, Voovi, Yessma, Uncut Adda, Tri Flicks, X Prime, Neon X VIP, Besharams, Hunters, Rabbit, Xtramood, Nuefliks, MoodX, Mojflix, Hot Shots VIP, Fugi, Chikooflix, and Prime Play.

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The content hosted on these platforms was deemed obscene and vulgar. This content violates Sections 67 and 67A of the IT Act, Section 292 of the IPC, and Section 4 of the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986.

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Some platforms boasted significant viewership, with one app surpassing 1 crore downloads and two others exceeding 50 lakh downloads on Google Play Store alone.

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Additionally, these platforms actively utilised social media to attract audiences, accumulating a total of over 32 lakh followers across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter (now X), and YouTube.

The Ministry of I&B has been engaging with OTT platforms and their self-regulatory bodies through various channels like meetings, webinars, and workshops to ensure compliance with regulations.

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