Rajnath vows to stop telecast of Dec 16 rapist interview, govt warns TV channels

  • Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Dec 11, 2015 15:13 IST

Union home minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday said the government has taken necessary action to stop the telecast of a documentary based on the interview with a convict in the December 16 gang-rape case.

Making a statement in the Rajya Sabha, the home minister said government condemns the December 16, 2012 incident and will not allow to leverage such incidents for commercial use.

"It has come to the notice that the said interview was scheduled to be telecast by BBC-4 on International Women's Day on March 8," he said.

"Our government condemns the incident of 2012. The government has taken necessary action and secured a court order restraining telecast of the film," the minister said.

The issue forced the adjournment of the house for 15 minutes amid noisy scenes earlier as members expressed outrage over the interview.

Rajnath Singh later summoned summoned director general of Tihar jail, where the documentary was shot.
DG Alok Kumar Verma is understood to have briefed the home minister details about how the permission was granted to interview the convict, Mukesh Singh, and how it had taken place.
Official sources said during their ten minute meeting, Verma also conveyed to the Home Minister about various aspects of the jail manuals and the procedures of meeting an inmate by an outsider.

The permission for shooting the documentary was given in 2013, but former home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde told news channels that the request never came to him.

Meanwhile, the I&B ministry declared that the said content was "violative" of programming code and advised TV channels to see to it that the norms were not violated.

"Because this whole broadcast and the content of the broadcast violates the programming code of the information and broadcasting ministry, wherein there is derogatory language towards women, it seems to incite violence against women... there is also contempt of court in the context of the interview as the matter is sub-judice.
"It perhaps creates or will create a law and order situation. It also creates a sense of fear in the women in our society," Rathore said.

Rathore said the government does not intend to restrict the availability of the interview online.

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