Bengaluru police asks TV channels to stick to programming code or face action


PTI, Mar 10, 2021, 5:34 PM IST

Bengaluru: The City Police has asked TV news channels to conform to the “Programming Code” and desist from airing objectionable videos, or else face action, in a move that came after some of them broadcast videos purportedly showing a former minister in “sex-for-job” clips which he has sought to dismiss as ‘fake.’

Days after the resignation of Karnataka minister Ramesh Jarkiholi following television channels showing videos pertaining to the alleged sex-for-job scandal, Bengaluru police commissioner Kamal Pant passed an order to this effect on Tuesday.

In his order Pant said, “As an ‘Authorised Officer’ for Bengaluru City jurisdiction as per the powers vested under section 19 the Cable Television Networks (Regulations) Act, 1995 in public interest, hereby prohibit all the broadcasts, which are not strictly in conformity in terms of ‘Programming Code’.”

“Any violation of the aforesaid direction, shall be liable for prosecution, under section 16 of Cable Television Networks Act, 1994,” he said.

The order came even as the government had been mulling bringing in a law to prevent news channels from airing footage of objectionable videos.

Jarkiholi, who was earlier with the Congress, was among the chief architects in causing the downfall of the Congress-JD(S) coalition government that eventually paved the way for the BJP to come to power in 2019.

The BJP MLA, who had stepped down as minister on March 3 following allegations of sexual harassment against him, had said on Tuesday that the videos purportedly showing him with a woman were fake and vowed to send the ”conspirators” behind bars. Earlier, a social activist had filed a complaint against the Gokak MLA, alleging he sexually harassed a ”job aspirant” and had threatened her and her family with dire consequences.

But Dinesh Kallahalli subsequently withdrew the complaint, saying he was hurt by allegations of a Rs 5 crore deal, levelled by JDS leader H D Kumaraswamy, in the matter.

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