Ministry of information and broadcasting panel to be replaced soon
A committee set up by the ministry of information and broadcasting (MIB) to devise ways to regulate online media and other Internet content has been disbanded, and its mandate will now be handed over to a panel overseen by the ministry of electronics and information technology (MeitY), an official aware of the development said on Friday.
The committee on national in-vestment in critical national infrastructure and digital broadcast sting by MeitY will also be tasked with drafting the proposed regulations for online content, the official said on condition of anonymity. The committee has the secretary of MeitY as convener and has on board the secretaries of MIB and the department of telecommunications as well as the nat- ional cyber security coordinator.
“The terms of reference of the proposed online regulation committee were similar to those of the existing committee set up by MeitY. Hence, it has been decided that its terms of reference will be dovetailed with the existing committee,” the official cited above said. The official said the committee will meet with stakeholders and “recommend necessary support in a systemic manner.”
While MIB officials did not respond to queries, the government has been stressing that it is not considering regulation of news websites.
I&B minister Rajyavardhan Rathore had earlier said: “We believe in self-regulation of all mediums and we trust the consumer of news to be able to be able to tell right from wrong.”
The 10-member committee was set up in April by the then-I&B minister Smriti Irani, with representation from several ministries including home affairs, MeitY, legal affairs, Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, Press Council of India and the National Broadcasters Association. Citing reasons for setting up the committee, the MIB in April 4 order, said the idea was to “delineate the sphere of online information dissemination which needs to be brought under regulation, on the lines applicable for print and electronic media”.