High Court asks Centre to clarify regulatory mechanism for TV contents

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The Madras High Court today directed the Union government to clarify on the existing regulatory mechanism governing contents aired by television channels.

The First Bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sunder gave this direction to Assistant Solicitor General Su Srinivasan, who appeared for the Centre, during the hearing of a PIL to stop telecast of Tamil reality show ‘Bigg Boss’ hosted by actor Kamal Haasan on ‘Vijay TV’.

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The matter was then posted for further hearing on August 18.

Earlier, senior counsel P S Raman, who appeared on behalf of the actor, submitted that there were two bodies to regulate the channels.

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One is the Broadcasting Content Complaints Council, a self-regulatory body headed by a retired Supreme Court judge and the other is by the Government of India regulating all channels under the information and broadcasting ministry, he said.

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Petitioner Saravanan has alleged that in the reality show Haasan played with emotions and behaviour of the female contestants, which he termed was very vulgar and obscene.

He further submitted that to protect Tamil culture and tradition and in the interest and welfare of the general public, the telecast of the show must be stalled immediately.

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“The dress code and behaviour of female contestants on the show are very vulgar and obscene making my family members and me uncomfortable in watching the programme.

“Also, the reference to ‘cheri’ (slum) behaviour – made by a participant to describe the behaviour of another contestant greatly hurt downtrodden people,” the petitioner said.

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