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Centre flagged 163 instances of communally provocative remarks on TV channels over 3 years

Government issued warnings and advisories to private television channels flagging 163 instances of airing communally provocative remarks in violation of ‘Programme Code’ over the last three years, the Lok Sabha was informed on Tuesday.

In a written reply in the Lok Sabha, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said the government has an institutional mechanism for taking action in respect of private TV channels which are found to violate the Programme Code. “During the last three years and current year, the government has taken action in respect of 163 cases by issuance of advisories, warnings, apology scroll orders and off-air orders,” Thakur said.

The Programme Code under the Cable Television Networks Rules contains broad guidelines relating to content broadcast on private television channels, he said.

Thakur said the Central government amended the Cable Television Networks Rules on June 17, 2021 to provide for a statutory mechanism for redressal of grievances/ complaints of violation of Programme Code and Advertising Code of the broadcast by television channels.

“The rules provide for three-level complaint redressal mechanisms, Level I by the broadcaster, Level II by the self regulating bodies of the broadcasters, and Level III by oversight mechanism of the Central government,” Thakur said.

The I&B Ministry also issues advisories from time to time to private satellite TV channels for adhering to the Programme Code. The ministry had issued an advisory on April 23, 2022 to all private satellite TV channels to ensure strict compliance with the Programme Code under Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 and rules framed thereunder, Thakur said. PTI

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