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Draft broadcasting Bill threatens creative freedom, warn experts

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has put out the regulation for public consultation and has invited comments and suggestions on the bill for the next 30 days

OTT, digital platform, hotstar
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Ashutosh Mishra New Delhi

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The government’s proposed changes to broadcasting regulations could potentially impede creative expression and restrict freedom of speech, according to experts. The draft Broadcasting Services (Regulation) Bill, 2023, which was released last week for public consultation, seeks to enforce government-mandated programming and advertising rules on broadcasting platforms, including over-the-top (OTT) services.

Ranjana Adhikari, partner at IndusLaw, expressed concerns that subjecting creative media, such as OTT, to government-prescribed programme and advertising codes could “stifle creativity and have a chilling effect on the cherished freedom of speech and expression”. She also noted that the heavy compliance burden proposed in the draft Bill could

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First Published: Nov 19 2023 | 7:28 PM IST

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