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MIB recants, says only explicit condom ads banned during the day

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MUMBAI: After stirring the hornet’s nest on the contentious issue of restricting condom ads to only water-shedding hours, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has clarified that such ads can be aired on TV during daytime. 

In an advisory earlier this month, the MIB had asked all TV channels to air condom advertisements only between 10pm to 6am to avoid exposure of such material to children.

But in a clarification dated 21 December 2017, the ministry said the ban on condom advertisements during daytime applies only to commercials that have sexually explicit content.

In a release, the ministry quoted that “advertisements that do not sexually objectify women and are aimed at informing citizens regarding devices/products/medical interventions to ensure safe sex are not covered under the said advisory.”

The ministry had earlier stated that it had taken note of objections regarding condom ads that are “targeted at a particular age group” being aired on some channels that are considered as ‘indecent especially for children.' It used Rule 7 (7) and Rule 7 (8) of the Cable TV Networks Rules, 1994 to tell broadcasters to refrain from telecasting ads of condoms that could be considered inappropriate/indecent for viewing by children. 

The relaxation on the issue came after the Rajasthan high court issued a notice to the Centre challenging an advisory of the MIB barring TV channels from showing condom ads during prime time.

The petition underlined the fact that condom ads don’t violate Rule 7 of the Cable Television Network Rules, 1994 which apply to anything which endangers the safety of children or create in them any interest in unhealthy practices or shows them begging or in an undignified or indecent manner. 

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) had approached the ministry earlier this month for guidance after several people complained regarding the inappropriate nature of the condom ads being telecast during primetime viewing on most channels. 

Also Read:

I&B tightens up on condom ads on TV

'Sanskari' India wants condom ads off primetime

MIB categorises all non-Hindi and non-Eng TV channels as regional

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