SC: States expected to set up bodies to monitor govt. ads, raps Delhi govt.

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has said it expected all government ?functionaries to rise to the occasion? and to act in the matter of publication of Government advertisements with ?utmost responsibility to ensure that such advertisements carry the right message to the citizens and do not glorify and/or personify any particular individual presently in the helm of affairs of the Union or the State.?

Dismissing a contempt petition by the Centre for Public Interest Litigation, the court said the impact and importance of a government advertisement cannot be lost on the functionaries of the Union as well as the State.

The court expressed confidence that in future advertisements of states, union territories or the Union of India, the ?purpose? of government advertisements as dealt with in its judgment ?shall be kept in mind and the advertisements will be published in the true spirit in which they are required to be so published.?

Justice Ranjan Gogoi and justice P C Ghosh said in their recent judgment that the ?spirit? of the judgment of 13 May 2015 relating to government advertising ?would require the states to also constitute their respective committees which shall now be done.?

The court added: ?If the states so desire the committee constituted at the central level referred to in the affidavit of the Union of India may be entrusted with the task of overseeing the publication of advertisements in the states?.

The judges said the judgment had ?clearly laid down that the committee constituted would be responsible for ironing out the creases that may show from time to time in the implementation of the directions of the court and also to oversee such implementation. In the event it becomes so necessary and the committee, for any reasons, is unable to render effective and meaningful service it is always open for an aggrieved party or a conscious citizen to approach this court once again.?

Noting that ?we do not think it necessary to do so at this stage?, the judges rejected the argument by counsel Prashant Bhushan that the committee suggested by the court should be armed with further powers.

The Court also noted that the government affidavit showed that the three-member committee has been constituted consisting of the persons mentioned in the body of the affidavit. In fact, the first meeting of the committee has been held on 18 April 2016.

(A three-member committee headed by former chief election commissioner B B Tandon was set up on 6 April. The other members are News Broadcasters Association president and editor-in-chief of India TV Rajat Sharma, and Ogilvy & Mather executive chairman and creative director for South Asia Piyush Pandey)

Referring to the allegations about the publication of advertisements by Tamil Nadu, the court said that the affidavit of the chief secretary to the state government showed that the advertisements published by the state do not carry the photograph of the chief minister and the advertisements which do carry the photograph of the chief minister were so published by the Indian Express, New Delhi Edition and funded by the said group and not by the state. Therefore, the judges said ?we do not consider it necessary to pursue the matter any further?.

As far as allegations about advertisements of Delhi government belittling other political parties went, the court said ?a reading of the advertisements in question published by the government of NCT of Delhi would go to show that some portions of the same have been somewhat inarticulately drafted and there is room for improvement.?

Latest Reads
Parliamentary IT report cites high charge by Antrix as hurdle to satellite connectivity

Despite the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) citing high cost of satellite-delivered bandwidth to reach remote areas for providing broadband services, parliament’s committee on IT has observed that prohibitive cost should not come in the way of availing of the services as adequate funds are...

Regulators I&B Ministry
SC stays J&K HC order to not prohibit outside food in theatre

MUMBAI: The Supreme Court has stayed a direction issued by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court to the multiplexes/cinema hall owners of the state not to prohibit cinema goers/viewers from carrying their own food articles and water inside the theatre, as per a report by the Indian Express.

Regulators Supreme Court
MIB gives permission to four new channels

For nearly a year, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has been stingy in handing out licences to channels. But in July, four new channels got permissions and none were cancelled.

Regulators I&B Ministry
Does govt propose to regulate kids' channels? MIB says 'no'

NEW DELHI: Do watching cartoons have lasting effects on the children? Has the government made any assessment regarding the impact of cartoon channels on kids? Does the government propose to regulate/limit the telecast of cartoon programmes by private channels and Doordarshan in accordance with the...

Regulators I&B Ministry
RS Sharma re-appointed TRAI chairman till Sept 2020

TRAI chairman RS Sharma, whose last day was today has got an extension till 30 September 2020.

Regulators TRAI
Being pro-consumer does not mean one is anti-industry: TRAI chairman RS Sharma

Outgoing TRAI chairman RS Sharma, whose tenure saw major, at times controversial, decisions on issues like termination charge and predatory pricing, on Wednesday said he is of the firm belief that being pro-consumer does not mean one is anti-industry.

Regulators TRAI
Meity says no proposal presently to tap WhatsApp messages

Though the Indian government continues to explore avenues to track digital footprints of the citizens and regulations for online media, it said on Wednesday it did not plan at present to tap people’s WhatsApp messages.

Regulators I&B Ministry
MIB seeks details to simplify forex payments for broadcasters, teleport ops

In what it says is aimed at further easing norms for doing broadcast business, the government has asked for particulars from TV channels and teleport operators using services of foreign satellites for uplinking and temporary uplinking so payment of foreign exchange processes could be simplified.

Regulators I&B Ministry
DoT seeks views on blocking mobile apps like FB, WhatsApp

India’s telecom department has sought views of the stakeholders on technical measures that can be adopted for blocking mobile apps like Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp and Telegram. The proposal has been questioned and criticised by a large section of the industry and civil society, including chamber...

Regulators I&B Ministry

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories