I&B panel meeting on surrogate ads postponed

 NEW DELHI: The meeting of the high-powered government committee mandated to look into the issue of surrogate and objectionable advertisements, was postponed today. Reason: In anticipation that the Cable TV (Networks) Amendment Bill 2002, which will facilitate the implementation of conditional access systems, will be discussed in the Indian Parliament's Upper House (Rajya Sabha).

Admitting that the Rajya Sabha was yet to take up the CAS issue till the time of posting this story, a senior information and broadcasting ministry official told indiantelevision.com: "The meeting was scheduled for late afternoon, but we postponed it for few days as we were anticipating that the CAS issue will come up in the Rajya Sabha."

The committee, headed by I&B ministry additional secretary (broadcasting), Anil Baijal, mostly comprises government officials, apart from representatives from some NGOs and the Advertising Council of India.

The official also said that various TV channels have responded in a positive manner to the request of the committee on mostly surrogate liquor ads.

"The idea of this committee is not to browbeat anybody, but to show them the logic behind the panel's decision on surrogate ads. If liquor and tobacco ads are banned in India, then there is no reason why anybody should flout these rules directly or indirectly," the official said.

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