UPSC JIHAD: fresh Notice served to Sudarshan News on IMC recommendations

By Diksha Mehta-

On 5th October, 2020 the Supreme Court was informed by the Centre that the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) has made some additional recommendations for the Sudarshan TV News channel with respect to its controvercial show ‘Bindas Bol’ and a fresh notice was issued to it with respect to the same.

The Sudarshan TV News Channel has recently been in the news for propagating communal hatred in its show ‘Bindas Bol’ that was airing an episode named ‘UPSC Jihad’, stating that the Muslims are infiltrating the bureaucracy in India by entering the All India Civil Services. Earlier, the Delhi High Court had stayed the airing of the programme on 28 August, 2020.

The High Court gave the News channel time till 1 September, 2020 to file its response.

The Court further observed that the alleged clipping was in violation of the Programme Code under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995.

While the case was being heard in the Delhi High Court, it was also being simultaneously heard in the Supreme Court.

The Apex Court refused to order a pre-telecast injunction on the show. However, on 11 September, 2020 the SC itself imposed a temporary restriction on airing of the show until further orders on grounds that the sole purpose of the show was to degrade the Muslim community.

On 23 September, 2020 a show-cause notice was issued by the Centre to the news channel to give its explanation as to the violation of the Programme Code till 28 September, 2020.

On 4 October, 2020 a notice was circulated by the Centre that there should be adjournment in the case. In reply to the notice issued to it, Sudarshan channel had given its reply which was forwarded to the IMC for its recommendations on the shows telecasted by it.

It was given proper chance to present its submissions and oral arguments in front of the IMC.

However, to give full effect to the additional recommendations of the IMC, one more opportunity is sought to be awarded to the channel to present its case on those recommendations.

That is the reason the postponement of hearing is being sought by the Central Government.

According to Solicitor- General, a show-cause notice was issued to the channel by the Central Government and the next hearing for the same shall be conducted tomorrow i.e. 6 September, 2020 in front of the SC Bench comprising Justices DY Chandrachud, Indu Malhotra and Indira Banerjee. 

The matter is listed for 26th October, 2020.