The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B) on Tuesday blocked the website, social media accounts and applications of ‘Punjab Politics TV’ a foreign-based organization for attempting to use an online platform to disturb public order during assembly elections.
Punjab Politics TV reportedly has links to the banned organization Sikhs For Justice (SFJ). SFJ had been declared unlawful under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
The Ministry in a statement said, “Relying on intelligence inputs that the channel was attempting to use online media to disturb public order during the ongoing State Assembly Elections, the Ministry used emergency powers under the IT Rules on February 18 to block the digital media resources of 'Punjab Politics TV'.”
The content of the blocked apps, websites and social media handles could potentially incite communal disharmony, separatism and were found to be detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India, security of the state, and public order, the ministry noted.
“Government of India remains vigilant and committed to secure the overall information environment in India and thwart any actions having the potential to undermine India's sovereignty and integrity,” the I&B ministry said.
The ministry further said, “It was also observed that the launch of new apps and social media accounts was timed to gain traction during the ongoing elections.”
Notably, Assembly polls were held in Punjab on February 20 and the results will be declared on March 10.