The central government’s desicion to boycott Hindi news channel NDTV India for a day has been strongly criticised by spectators, writers and opposition parties alike..
This is the first time ever that a news channel has been banished from broadcasting for breaking national security laws in the nation. While the administration has defended the ban in light of a legitimate concern for national security, the Editors Guild of India has condemned it a violation of the freedom of media. In the midst of all the shock, there is still some confusion over why the ban was forced and under which law. Here is a clarification of some critical parts of the ban. Have a look:
What does the ban involve?
The Information and Broadcasting service has passed a request to “Prohibit the transmission or re-transmission of NDTV India channel for one day on any platform throughout India with effect from 00:01 hrs on 9th November,2016 till 00:01 hrs of 10th November, 2016“.
Why was NDTV India banned?
Sources in the Information &Broadcasting service said that the action was made against the channel since it had uncovered delicate points of interest, for example, such as the location of the ammunition depot, school and residential areas in its coverage of the Pathankot attack. It also appeared to disclose the location of the attackers.
This significant data could have been promptly grabbed by the psychological militants’ hackers and jeopardised national security as well as the lives of civilians and defence personnel.
What does the law say?
Under Rule 6(1)(p) of the Cable TV Network (Regulation) Act, no programme should be telecast any content which contains live coverage of anti-terrorist operation by security forces, periodic briefing by an officer designated by the appropriate government, till such operation closes.
What was the procedure took after?
January 29: Showcause notice was issued to NDTV India for infringement of Cable Act; they were asked to answer inside 15 days.
February 5: The channel reacted, presenting that the coverage was adjusted and mindful.
July 25: Channel’s agents were given an individual hearing before an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC).
November 2: The order declaring the ban was made open. NDTV India can take lawful plan of action and appeal the ban.
What were the perceptions of the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC)?
The IMC, which includes joint secretaries home, defence, I&B, health and family welfare, consumer affairs, law and justice, external affairs, women and child development and representative of the Advertising Standards Council of India recommended that NDTV India be taken off-air for one day.
In its report to the Information & Broadcasting ministry, the IMC observed that disclosure of sensitive information has several ramifications such as causing alarm and de-moralisation of citizens and security forces, collateral damage to critical assets, apprehension among families of those serving in combat.