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I&B warns India TV and Channel V on content issue
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#1
NEW DELHI: The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has issued warnings to two more channels. India TV and the Rupert Murdoch-owned music Channel [V] have been told not to commit repeated violations of the Programme and Advertising Codes.

While India TV – which had received a warning for another reportage just ten days earlier – has been pulled up for reportage about Jhanvi Kapur on 7 May 2007, Channel [V] has come under the scanner for the reality beauty show Get Gorgeous 5 last year.

The warning has been given under Section 20 of the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act 1995 and under provisions of the Uplinking Guidelines.

Both channels have been asked to ensure strict compliance to the Programme and Advertising Codes and told that "any further violation may entail stringent action including prohibition of broadcast."

India TV has been asked to carry the scroll: "Ministry of Information and Broadcasting warned India TV for telecast of a news item in form of Exclusive and Special Report which was based on distorted facts which was found in violation of the Programme Code."

The scroll is to be carried in legible large font and at normal speed and without any interruption/mixing of any type of advertisement round-the-clock for three days from noon 10 July to noon 13 July.

A recording of the scroll has to be submitted to the Ministry in VCD format. The channel has been asked not to telecast/re-telecast the report, which was alleged to have been based on distorted facts about the character of Kapur and was telecast to mislead the public and defame her.

The Ministry had issued a show cause notice in July 2007 to which the channel had replied in August 2008, also contending that the matter was sub judice as it was pending before Delhi High Court.

The warning was issued after the Inter-Ministerial Committee constituted to look into such complaints previewed the reportage and held that the channel had violated Rule 6(1)(d) of the Programme Code.

Along with this latest violation, India TV has been sent show cause notices ten times since March, 2005 and warnings or advisories have been issued six times. While the matter has been treated as closed in all other cases, one matter is under consideration while another is pending in Delhi High Court.

In the case of Channel [V], notice has been issued on 8 October last year for telecast of Get Gorgeous 5 as a content "appeared to be offending good taste and decency, as foul and unparliamentary language and gestures were used in the show. The content of the show appeared obscene and suggestive and could malign public and moral life of society and was not suitable for unrestricted public exhibition."

Star India had replied on 21 November last taking the plea that freedom of speech and expression was one of the key fundamental rights granted by the Indian constitution. Thereafter representatives of the channel were given personal hearing, and they submitted that the programme was a talent search that had been premiered in 2004.

The Inter-Ministerial Committee, constituted to look into such complaints thereafter, previewed the recordings of the programme. The Competent Authority, after examining the report of the Committee and hearing the channel, felt the channel had violated Rule 6(1)(a) and 6(5) of the Programme Code.

The channel was accordingly warned and told that any further violation may entail stringent action including prohibition of telecast.

The channel has earlier run foul of the Ministry twice in October 2004 and July 2006 for telecasting certain songs. In the former case, the channel had been asked to run an apology scroll.

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Channel [V] also warned after M TV??????????
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