Cable TV operators in Kashmir were today directed by the authorities to stop airing five news channels as their programmes had allegedly caused law and order problems in the unrest-hit Valley and were promoting “enmity against the sovereignty of the state.”
“Whereas SSP Srinagar has informed that cable operators operating in district Srinagar are transmitting various programmes which has created law and order problem in the Valley in general and Srinagar in particular as these cable operators transmit programmes which promote hatred, ill-will, disharmony and a feeling of enmity against the sovereignty of State,” an order issued by District Magistrate Srinagar to the cable TV operators read.
According to the order, the TV channels – KBC, Gulistan TV, Munsiff TV, JK Channel and Insaaf TV – have started to telecast programmes which have potential of causing mental and physical harm to particular functionaries of the government.
“These programmes have caused feeling of prejudice to the maintenance of harmony and public peace,” the order said.
Invoking the Cable Television Network (Regulation Act, 1995), the District Magistrate said the act provided a mechanism to regulate the operation of television network and to prevent the breach of peace and stop incitement and instigation of the public to cause mental and physical threat to particular functionaries of the government.
You are directed to stop telecasting/transmitting the programmes of these channels failing which action as contemplated under the provisions of Cable Television Networks (Regulation Act, 1995) will be taken against you, the order said.
Expressing surprise over the order, the cable TV operators said the government should at least make a distinction between a cable and a satellite channel.
“These are all satellite channels which are being aired from outside the state of Jammu and Kashmir. The Cable TV Networks Act does not apply to these channels,” said one of the cable TV operators.