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‘A’ films ground 4 channels

- Govt crackdown on adult content on telly

New Delhi, Jan. 14: Four entertainment channels have been asked to stop transmission for specified periods for violating the programme code of the Cable Television Networks Rule, 1994.

These channels — Zing, Manoranjan TV, enterr 10 and SS TV — had shown movies and film clips with adult content.

While SS TV will remain off the air from January 15 to January 30, the other three were directed to stop transmission for 24 hours from January 13 midnight.

Officials in the information and broadcasting ministry said letters to the channels, issued five days ago, explained why the action was being taken against them.

“Zing channel telecast the Hindi feature film Hawas on 10.1. 2012 at 21.07 hrs after displaying ‘A’ certificate given by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) film,” the letter to Zing said.

The letter said the film telecast by the channel showed “passionate” scenes “between a couple… in bed”.

“Such a portrayal is distinctly meant for adult audience, for which (the) CBFC had appropriately given ‘A’ certification to the said film,” the letter said.

It further said that Rule 6(1) (0) 0f the Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994, provides that no programme should be carried on cable service which is not suitable for unrestricted public exhibition. Also, no film, song, trailer or music video or their promos, whether produced in India or abroad, should be carried through cable service unless it has been certified by the CBFC as suitable for unrestricted public exhibition.

The channel had been asked to present its case before an inter-ministerial committee but failed to come up with a plausible explanation.

SS TV, which drew the maximum punishment, was found guilty of showing on September 13, 2011, the trailer of Friend with benefits, an English film with adult content, without being certified by the CBFC for telecast on TV channels.

The trailer began with a voiceover, with a couple in the background saying they had “come to the conclusion that sex should not come with so many emotional attachments” and went on to show graphic scenes. Such portrayal did not appear to be suitable for unrestricted public exhibition, the ministry noted.

The other two channels have been penalised for airing films with explicit sex scenes, said a senior official in the ministry.