Hindu group calls for ban on streaming platforms, crypto currencies

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Hindu group calls for ban on streaming platforms, crypto currencies

MUMBAI Reuters - A powerful right-wing Hindu group linked to India's ruling party has called for ban on streaming platforms and crypto currencies, saying regulation was essential.

There is a need to regularise these things for the larger good of society, said Mohan Bhagwat, head of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the ideological parent of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's party Bharatiya Janata.

Streaming platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video have faced lawsuits and police investigations, mostly in a BJP-ruled state, for content which is deemed inflammatory and offensive to the country's majority Hindu population.

Netflix, Amazon and Walt Disney Co, another major streaming platform in India, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Bitcoin and the Association of Blockchain Crypto Entrepreneurs from India could not immediately be reached.

A currency like bitcoin - I don't know which country controls it or which rules govern it, Bhagwat said in a speech to followers marking the Hindu festival of Dussehra on Friday. Modi's government looks to the Hindu group for policy guidance, but has refrained from regulating streaming platforms. Besides watching movies and TV shows, television shows must go through a censor board.

The government has prepared but did not submit a bill to parliament earlier this year that would have banned trading and holding cryptocurrencies.

Local media reported the government was looking to tax cryptocurrency trades and the exchanges, traders and lawyers that support them in the country.