New Delhi: Faced with rising number of
complaints of vulgarity on television shows, Government on Tuesday
said it would soon constitute a council headed by a retired
judge with representation from civil society to regulate such
"We are right on the threshold of announcing a
self-regulatory mechanism to monitor content on television,"
Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni told the Lok
Sabha during Question Hour.
This mechanism will take up complaints from the civil
society regarding any objectionable content on private
television channels, she said.
Soni said the ministry would step in only when the action
of the mechanism was not satisfactory.
The minister was responding to concerns voiced by NDA
convenor Sharad Yadav and N Chaluvaraya Swamy (Cong) on
reality shows like `Big Boss` and demanded strengthening of
censorship for such content.
Soni made it clear that there was no censor board for
television content, which is being regulated by the Cable
Regulatory Act with some uplinking and downlinking criteria
for the broadcasters.
The ministry would not like to do anything which is later
on struck down by the courts, she said citing an example of
change in timing of a TV show by the ministry which was turned
down by the High Court.
Pointing out to concerns of broadcasters of high carriage
fee, Soni said the ministry, along with TRAI, was in the
process of digitalisation of cable television across the
country. On completion of this exercise, the complaint of high
carriage fees would be resolved, she said.
Soni said enough steps are being taken to strengthen DD
network in border areas like the northeast and Jammu and
Kashmir to ensure that signals of foreign broadcasters do not
dominate the region.
She said the ministry had facilities to record programmes
of 300 television channels as part of measures to monitor