Recent Judgements and Orders related to Media Law and Culture
Srishti (Ad-Anhad) Judgement
The recent Delhi High Court judgement upholding the constitutional right to freedom of speech of expression in a case related to the censorship of Ad-Anhad(Bounded-Boundless), a film by Shabnam Virmani that centres around 15th century mystic poet Kabir who defied the boundaries between Hindu and Muslim. This film journeys through song and poem into the politics of religion, and finds a myriad answers on both sides of the hostile border between India and Pakistan. The case challenged orders passed by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) upholding three of the four cuts ordered by the Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC).
TV 9 (NBSA) Order
The recent decision by the News Broadcasting Standards Authority of India holding TV9 (Telegu) Channel in Violation of its Guidelines related to privacy and sting operations. The programme in question was an ‘expose’ of homosexual culture in Hyderabad that was telecast on 22 February 2011. The programme resulted in vociferous protests including online campaigns and protests held in Hyderabad, Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. The NBSA held that the programme “needlessly violated the right to privacy of individuals with possible alternate sexual orientation no longer considered a taboo or a criminal act” and the programme “misused the special tool of a sting operation available only to subserve the larger interest.”