On Friday, November 10, 2023, i.e. yesterday, the union government issued the draft Broadcasting Services (Regulation) Bill for public consultation. Reportedly, the draft bill proposed by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had passed the proposed regulation in Parliament and now it will replace the Cable TV Networks (Regulation) Act which has been in force since 1995. The Cable TV Networks (Regulation) Act has been serving as the primary legislation for linear content over the past three decades but now it’s time for a change as the respective ministry has proposed a new bill to replace it. Since the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting proposed the draft bill people have become curious to know what this bill aims for. Let’s delve deep into the details and learn more about it. Swipe down the page.
Reportedly, the draft regulation bill proposed by the ministry aims to build a consolidated legal framework for the broadcasting sector and the new age platforms including OTT platforms. Information and Broadcasting Minister of India, Anurag Thakur took to his Twitter handle and said the proposed legislation was in line with the government’s ease of doing business policy. The regulation will need broadcasting and content platforms to form a self-regulating content evaluation committee to oversee content on their platforms.
A senior official of the I&B ministry said, “We are trying to strengthen the self-regulation regime and create a content evaluation committee at the broadcaster level. The content that comes on the channel should be certified by the committee,” The draft bill also suggests replacing the existing IDC (Inter-Departmental Committee) which is currently the apex body to settle grievances related to the content, with a BAC (Broadcast Advisory Council). According to the new proposed bill, the new body will have a chairperson who will be an independent authority with 25 years of experience in the media, entertainment, or broadcasting sector, and five independent members, and the remaining five will be government nominees.