Delhi High Court on Saturay refused to vacate the stay on the telecast of the show ‘Bindas Bol’ to be telecast by on private television channel Sudarshan TV. The court has asked Centre to decide on the notice given to the channel within 48 hours from September 1.
The private television channel’s controversial programme which claimed a ‘big expose on conspiracy to infiltrate Muslims in government service’ came under judicial scrutiny before the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court.
Sudarshan TV moved the High Court for vacation of stay in light of the Supreme Court order refusing to grant any such relief against the broadcast.
Hearing was held by a Single Judge Bench of Justice Navin Chawla post 7 pm today.
In line with the Supreme Court order, the Court opined that the power to decide whether the broadcast was permissible lied with the competent authority under the Central Government.
It, accordingly, directed Sudarshan TV to reply to the Central Government’s notice by September 1 and granted 48 hours to the authority to decide the issue after giving an opportunity to Sudarshan TV and its Editor-in-Chief, Suresh Chavhanke to present their case.
However, opining that prima facie, the broadcast was in violation of the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, the Court refused to vacate the stay and directed Sudarshan TV to not air the broadcast till then.
While giving liberty to the parties to take appropriate legal action after the Central Government’s decision, the Court disposed of the petition before it.
In their petition filed through Advocate Shadan Farasat, the petitioners had argued that the proposed broadcast sought to defame, attack and incite hatred against Jamia Milia Islamia, its alumni, and the Muslim community at large.
It was contended that the proposed broadcast constituted hate speech and criminal defamation in terms of Sections 153A(1), 153B(1), 295A and 499 of Indian Penal Code, and violated the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act and its Rules.
In response to the petition, the Central Government had informed that the Court that the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had already issued notice to Sudarshan TV with respect to the proposed broadcast.