Crime and Investigation

SCAM Alert To All Bloggers And News Portals – Publishing Fake News Can Land You In Jail

publishing fake news

Bloggers and news portals play a key role in providing information and spreading awareness. However, before publishing any news or story provided by a third party, it is important to check the authenticity of the content. This needs to be done even when the shared content may be coming from a reputed media agency. As publishing fake news can get you in trouble, you might have jail for spreading the fake news.

It is important to understand that scamsters are very smart and can fool the best of the best. In the past, everyone from police officers to judges and even government officials and politicians have been conned by scamsters.

Jail Term / Penalty for publishing fake news

If you publish any content without verifying the authenticity, and if it turns out to be fake news, you could be jailed and charged a heavy penalty. The affected party may even file claims worth crores against you for defamation or causing financial losses linked to the fake news you posted on your blog or news portal.

Randomly publishing any news or story without checking the authenticity can land you in jail and attract crores in penalty

While currently there is no direct law for fake news, you can still be charged under various sections of the IPC. The charges will depend on the type of fake news published on your blog or news portal. Below are some of the charges that can be applied for spreading fake news. 

Section 153 of IPC

Any illegal act that has been done with the intention of provoking a riot. The fake news you publish on your website can be considered as an illegal act. If charged under Section 153, you can face jail term of up to 5 years or fine or both. 

Section 295A of IPC

This law covers any act that may hurt the religious sentiments and beliefs of people of another religion. It is possible that the news story you posted on your website may be charged under Section 295A of IPC. You can be jailed for 3 years or fined or both. 

Section 505 of IPC

This law covers any statement, report or rumor that may have been published with the intent of creating public mischief. You can be imprisoned for 3 years and charged a fine or both.

Proposed Prohibition of Fake News on Social Media Bill, 2023

In 2023, a new bill was proposed in the parliament for dealing with fake news. It called for the creation of a Social Media Regulatory Authority that can keep a check on fake news. The proposed bill covers a wide variety of fake news items that may be shared on social media platforms. The bill has provision for jail term of up to 7 years for the individual found guilty. Such individuals may also be fined up to Rs 10 lakh. Or both jail term and fine can be applicable, depending on the type of crime. 

Given the amount of fake news being shared online, the bill may be passed later this year or in the near future. It is possible that changes could be introduced in the bill before it becomes a law. It will be great if the new bill makes provisions to identify the source of the fake news, instead of just penalizing the blog or news portal where it was published.

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By: The article is provided by outside news agency 

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