The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B Ministry), on Wednesday, cautioned television channel Sudarshan News on its controversial programme, ‘Bindas Bol’ but permitted the news channel to telecast the remainder of the episodes of the programme subject to suitable “modifications” and “moderations” Bar and Bench has reported.
The I&B Ministry in its order stated that, “The Ministry finds that they are not in good taste, offensive and has a likelihood of promoting communal attitudes”.
The Ministry at the same time noted that while examining all the facts and circumstances of the matter and the fundamental rights of the broadcaster, it has decided to caution Sudarshan News to be more careful in the future.
The Ministry also stated that Sudarshan News is not barred from airing the remaining episodes of the series but it needs to review their content so that there is no violation of the program code.
In August, a group of students from Jamia Millia Islamia University had filed a petition following which the Delhi high court stayed the broadcast of the show. It was a pre-telecast ban. The Supreme Court had sought Centre’s input and the ministry at that time gave a go-ahead to broadcast the show.
On September 15, the Supreme Court restrained the channel fro airing the remaining episodes.
On September 23, the Centre had informed the Supreme Court that it has prima facie found violation of the programme code by Sudarshan TV’s ‘Bindas Bol’ show and has issued a notice to the channel.
An inter-ministerial group viewed all the episodes of the programme and recommended Centre to send a show cause notice to the channel.
Replying to the showcause notice, the channel sent a 950-page justification urging the ministry to protect media freedom. It had also said that regular guests and panelists of the channel were receiving death threats.