Present-cause discover issued to Sudarshan TV on suggestion of inter-ministerial group: Centre to SC

New Delhi, October 5

The Centre told the Supreme Court on Monday that a show-cause notice has been issued to Sudarshan TV based on the recommendation of an inter-ministerial group that has viewed all the episode of the channel’s ‘Bindas Bol’ programme.

The apex court was hearing a plea that has raised grievance over Bindas Bol’ programme whose promo had claimed that channel would show the ‘big expose on conspiracy to infiltrate Muslims in government service’.

A Bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud was informed by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta that the inter-ministerial group has also heard the representative of the channel.

Taking note of Mehta’s submission, the Bench, also comprising Justices Indu Malhotra and Indira Banerjee, posted the matter for hearing on October 26 to enable the channel to file its reply to the show cause notice.

On September 23, the Centre had informed the apex 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.

The top court had said that steps taken by the government in pursuance to the show cause notice against the channel would be subject to the orders of the court.

The apex court had also said that its interim order of September 15, 2020 (injuncting the telecast of remaining episodes of the programme) shall continue to remain in operation pending further orders.

On September 21, the apex court had pondered over the nature and extent of its order regulating ‘Bindas Bol’ programme on alleged infiltration of Muslims in bureaucracy saying it did not want to “curtail” freedom of speech as the programme has “public interest” involved on issues of “foreign funding” and “reservation”.

Earlier, the top court had questioned Sudarshan TV over its programme asking whether the media can be allowed to “target whole set of communities”. 

It had asked the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and the National Broadcasters Association to give suggestions for strengthening the “self-regulating mechanism” of NBA for electronic media. PTI


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