Question : Telecast of TV Channels in a Dignified Manner

(a) whether the Government has taken or proposes to take any effective steps to ensure that the programmes are telecast by TV channels in a dignified manner; and
(b) if so, the details thereof?

Answer given by the minister


(a) & (b). As per 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 Code and Advertising Code prescribed under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 and Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994 framed thereunder. The Act does not provide for pre-censorship of any programme and advertisement telecast on such TV channels. However, all programmes and advertisements telecast on such TV channels should be in conformity with the prescribed Programme Code and Advertising Code which contains a wide range of parameters to regulate programmes and advertisements on TV channel.

Rule 6 (1) (a) of the Programme Code provides that no programme should be carried in the cable service which offends against good taste or decency. Whereas Rule 7(1) of the Advertising Code provides that advertising carried in the cable service shall be so designed as to conform to the laws of the country and should not offend morality, decency and religious susceptibilities of the subscribers.

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 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 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 Council of India (ASCI). The IMC meets periodically and recommends action for 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 monitor content telecast on cable TV channels and private FM Channels and Community Radio Stations.



As part of self-regulation, the following are the self- regulatory bodies of broadcasting industry:

(i) News Broadcasters Association (NBA)- a representative body of news and current affairs TV channels has set up News Broadcasting Standards Authority (NBSA) to consider complaints against or in respect of broadcasters relating to content of any news and current affairs telecast on TV channels.
(ii) Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF), which is a representative body of non-News & current affairs TV channels, has set up Broadcasting Content Complaints Council (BCCC) to examine the complaints about television programmes, and
(iii) Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a self regulatory body of advertising industry has set up Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) to consider complaints in respect of advertisements.

The above mechanism has also been acknowledged by the Supreme Court of India in its order dated 12.01.2017 in the matter of WP(C) No.387 of 2000 – Common Cause vs UOI & Ors.


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