News Broadcasters Federation welcomes SC order on fake news

NBF pledges its complete support to fight coronavirus

MUMBAI: The News Broadcasters Federation has welcomed the Supreme Court order against the menace of fake news. The apex court in its order on Tuesday, 31 March , made observations on the “menace of fake news either by electronic, print or social media” and has put the onus on the media to ensure unverified panic inducing news is not circulated. 

The NBF, which is the largest body of news broadcasters pan-India, not just acknowledges but welcomes the Supreme Court Order which states “we expect the Media (print, electronic or social) to maintain a strong sense of responsibility and ensure that unverified news capable of causing panic is not disseminated.” In the midst of India’s current battle against the novel coronavirus, the NBF recognises that there is a great need to be vigilant against fake news that is being proliferated both on certain media platforms, as well as on social media, said the federation in a release. 

NBF president Arnab Goswami said in a statement that the NBF stands in solidarity and supports completely the proactive initiatives undertaken by the Government of India to contain, control and defeat the COVID-19 pandemic whose grave impact spans over 199 nations and over 8.5 lakh individuals, at present. The NBF believes the nationwide lockdown to contain the COVID-19 threat needs to be upheld, and any fake news that deters this national fight needs to be debunked at the earliest. In light of this, the NBF strives to uphold it's national duty and stands by the Supreme Court intervention to curb rampant fake news. 

He added that the battle against the novel-coronavirus is and must remain a national effort, with each pillar of our democracy doing its part to ensure the social distancing norms are maintained, the lockdown rules are followed, and the concerted efforts to spread fear and mistrust amongst the people by a handful in detriment to this effort are defeated. The NBF believes that it's fundamental duty “to defend the country and render national service when called upon to do so”, in the present times, includes being an active participant in fighting fake news. 

“India is at the cusp of its battle against the pandemic, and has rapidly increased efforts to flatten the curve and delay the onset of Stage-3, that is, community transmission. The nature of the infection and the person-to-person spread means there is a need for restriction of movement in our nation of 1.3 billion, and any fake news to defeat this effort needs to be curtailed at the earliest,” he points out.

Goswami notes that the NBF acknowledges that this fight requires a united effort by all sections of society, all organisations and all groups need to come together. The NBF pledges its complete support to our frontline warriors and stands behind the Supreme Court order to curb fake news during the extraordinary situation currently faced by the nation and the world. 

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