Regulators

No plan for one-stop broadcast authority at present, says Rathore

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NEW DELHI: The Government has said there was no plan to set up a one-stop regulatory authority to receive complaints against broadcasting of programmes on private radio and television channels in violations of the code, thus ending the practice of self regulation.

Minister of state for information and broadcasting Rajyavardhan Rathore was answering a question in the Parliament where a member had wanted to know if a single body would be set up to end the practice of self-regulation.

Meanwhile, ruling out pre-censorship of private TV channels, the minister had last week listed the various steps being taken to prevent violation.

Rathore had said that under the existing regulatory framework, all programmes and advertisements telecast on private satellite TV channels and transmitted/re-transmitted through the Cable TV network are required to adhere to the Programme and Advertising Codes prescribed under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 and Cable Television Network Rules, 1994 framed thereunder.

The Act prescribes that all programmes and advertisements telecast on such TV channels including regional language channels should be in conformity with the prescribed Programme Code and Advertising Code enshrined in the said Act and the rules framed thereunder, which contain a whole range of parameters to regulate programmes and advertisements including the content aimed at instigating communal violence and fear in the minds of common people on TV channels.

The Ministry has set up Electronic Media Monitoring Centre (EMMC) to monitor the content telecast on private TV channels with reference to the violation of Programme and Advertising Codes.

An Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) has also been set up in the Ministry to look into the specific complaints or suo-motu take cognizance against the violation of Programme and Advertising Codes. The IMC has representatives from the Ministries of Home Affairs, Defence, External Affairs, Law, Women and Child Development, Health & Family Welfare, Consumer Affairs, Information & Broadcasting and a representative from the industry in Advertising Standards Authority of India (ASCI). The IMC meets periodically and recommends action in respect of violation of Programme and Advertising Codes by private TV channels.

Apart from this, the Ministry has also issued directions to States to set up District level and State level Monitoring Committees to regulate content telecast on cable TV channels. 

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