Did Iceland Declare 'All Religions Are Mental Disorders'? Satirical News Stirs Controversy

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Satirical post on Patheos, revealed Iceland’s Parliament has voted to declare all religions as 'psychological disorders'. Fact check busts column's legitimacy.

Written By Riya Baibhawi | Mumbai | Updated On:

In a stunning claim made by an American website, Patheos, it was revealed that Iceland’s Parliament has voted to declare all religions as 'psychological disorders'. This move reportedly came after Althing (Iceland's national and world's oldest surviving Parliament) in 2017 voted to place mental health warnings on all bibles and ban American televangelists. However, soon after the story broke out, another website discovered that the news was entirely false.

Did Iceland's Parliament vote to declare religions as mental disorders?

Upon closer observation, it was discovered that the actual column was written by Andrew Hall and hosted on Patheos.Com which published articles about religion and atheism. Hall also took to Facebook to say that the column was satirical and humourous.

According to Hall’s column, Iceland’s Parliament voted in favour of the statute with only three lawmakers voting against it. The lawmakers who voted against it reportedly believe that the measure didn’t go far enough. The satirical piece of news also quoted an anonymous representative who said Iceland did not want to end up like the United States and Saudi Arabia. It further added that  Andrew Kinard, an MP also gave a full-throated defence for why religion is a psychological disorder.

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Meanwhile, netizens were also quick to discover that the news was fake. Many users were left in disbelief and bemusement while others took the opportunity to dish out hysterical comments. Read it here; 

India's public service broadcaster Prasar Bharati on Wednesday called out foreign media for spreading fake news about the Centre's initiative against Single-Use Plastic. On Tuesday, a report from an international news agency stated that India had 'held off' imposing a blanket ban on Single-Use Plastic as it was not able to cope with the economic slowdown and job losses. The report said the Modi-government had planned to outlaw six items on the occasion of 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi Jayanti. 

Hitting out at the news agency, Prasar Bharati called its report 'fake'. It said the Centre had never planned to impose a blanket ban on plastic. Censuring Reuters, the public broadcaster said that the report was reflective of 'polemical approach' of the foreign media which intended to 'stoke controversies (and) spread negativity'. It added that such important was injustice towards 130 crore Indians' tribute to Gandhi on the Mahatma's 150th birth anniversary by doing away with Single-Use Plastic. 

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By 2030, 40% Indians will not have access to drinking water