The information and Broadcasting Ministry, which banned AXN a fortnight ago, is planning to take action against more television channels for showing objectionable content.
"I can’t reveal the identity of these four or five channels but action would be taken soon,” information and broadcasting minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi told reporters on the sidelines of Social Editors’ Conference.
The minister said he was not against "naughty" content provided it was telecast after 11 pm — “people can spend sleepless nights to watch such programmes” – but he said he was "sick" of some of the things being shown on television.
These channels have been showing, the minister said, content that is against the basic societal norms and depicts women in a bad taste. “It is time for the government to take a tough stand. I am sick of seeing these things on private channels,” he said.
When asked if he was policing television, Dasmunsi said, “Yes, I am the moral inspector for television and I am serious about it."
The ministry has been under pressure lately on content. The Mumbai High Court pulled up the ministry recently for allowing movies with "adult" rating on television. Some non-governmental organizations have had complaints about a few advertisements and programmes.
Sony India chief executive officer Kunal Dasgupta was supportive of the ministry’s plan. “The ministry has been rapped on its knees by courts for allowing content perceived as insensitive towards society and in bad taste. The ministry’s action is totally justified on that account."