The government has brought online news, current affairs content, and over the top (OTT) platform under the purview of the Ministry of Information Broadcasting (IB). The government has taken this step in line with the assurance given to bring OTT and online content under regulation in the Supreme Court. Until now, no law or autonomous body was governing digital content in the country.
The Cabinet Secretariat had issued a notification on Tuesday night to bring these platforms of online media under the IB Ministry. Under this, all OTT platforms and online news and content providers, from Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus Hotstar, have now come under the purview of government regulation.
President Ramnath Kovind's issued the notification said that the Government of India has decided to amend the (Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961, using the powers vested in clause three of Article 77 of the Constitution. The verdict has come into force with immediate effect.
Therefore, instead of the Ministry of IT, the Ministry of Information Broadcasting has got the right to policy regulation for materials related to film, audio-video, news, and current affairs available on the online platform. It is known that on the OTT platform The government was receiving a lot of complaints regarding the content shown.
The Supreme Court had last month asked the central government's stand on a petition seeking regulation on online platforms. The Information Broadcasting Ministry had told the court during the hearing of another case that the regulation of digital media is needed. It was also said that if the court wants to create hatred in the online media.
Given the speeches, a committee can be constituted as amicus before issuing the guidelines. Information Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar has been consistently saying that the government does not want to interfere in the freedom of media. That is why it is better than OTT platforms to also decide the code of conduct to control itself soon.
OTT platforms and online news platforms to be brought under the I and B Ministry