Other newspapers cannot be forced to give names of rival newspapers or channels

NEW DELHI: The Information and Broadcasting Ministry is of the view that Print and Electronic Media cannot be forced to take specific names of other newspapers and news channels they refer to in their news.

This has been stated by the Ministry in a letter to social activist Nutan Thakur who had made certain representations in this regard in the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court.

The Ministry said that Chairman of the Press Council is of the view that as per section 7 of the Press and Registration of Books Act 1867, the editor is the sole authority to decide the contents. Hence, it does not deem fit to lay rules making it mandatory to state the names of other newspapers being referred to and this decision shall be left to the Editor.

As regards need to keep record of their newspapers for a definite period, the Ministry said under section 25(1) of the proposed Press and Registration of Books and Publications Bill, there is a provision to deliver a copy of the newspaper as and when demanded by the Press Registrar General.

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