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Only registered online portals to be allowed to operate: Arafat

Seeking Deputy Commissioners help to fight against spread of falsehood and disinformation, state minister for information and broadcasting Mohammad Ali Arafat has said only the registered and professionals online portals will be allowed to operate to ensure accountability and discipline in the media industry.

Arafat said this at a meeting with Deputy Commissioners on Tuesday, the third day of ongoing DCs’ conference at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the city.
Emerging from the meeting Arafat told reporters that he sought active support of the DCs to combat spreading rumours and misinformation.

“There are some unregistered online portals, which are spreading rumours. We have a plan to mainstream those,” he told reporters as he mentioned in the meeting with DCs.

Arafat said the DCs echoed the demands of the journalists as they called for bringing discipline in the media industry, ascertaining minimum qualification for journalists and enacting necessary law for mass media employees.

Arafat said DCs are also anxious about the rumours and we have talked about fighting against rumours.
“But it’s impossible for the information ministry alone to combat the rumours being spread through online,” he said adding that everyone including the posts, telecommunications and ICT ministry have to work together.”

The state minister said DCs have close link with the grassroots people. Their initiative is very crucial to check any untoward incident triggered by any false information.

Arafat urged the DCs to monitor the contents being produced by cable operators to ensure their accuracy. He also asked them to enforce the directives regarding the transmission of clean-feed contents.