Cancelling licence unconstitutional: TV channel regulatory body to govt
In a communication to the ministry, the BCCC said the provision that renewal of permission will be considered subject to the condition that the channel should not have been found guilty of violating the terms and conditions of permission, including violations of the programme and advertising code on five occasions or more “grossly offends Articles 19(1)(a) and (g) of the Constitution”. It amounts to “unreasonably restricting the freedom of speech and expression, and also the freedom of trade and profession of the broadcasters,” it said.
Calling it a “mechanical rule”, BCCC chairman Justice (retd) A P Shah said that “we need some other system”.
In its proposal, the BCCC — set up by Indian Broadcasting Foundation — said that all violations should not be regarded as serious. “There should be gradation of violations, ranging from mild to severe,” it said. Besides, the general practice should be to impose fines and directions for correction. “Fines should, however, be substantial in case of serious violations and not merely token fines...Suspension or revocation of licence must be resorted to in exceptional circumstances, and only in cases of repeated and extremely severe violations,” it added.
The body has
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