Adult TV on way back to bedroom

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By CITHARA PAUL in Delhi
  • Published 10.02.09
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New Delhi, Feb. 9: Adult content may be back on TV with the information and broadcasting ministry considering a proposal to be more “liberal”, government sources have said.

If the adult programmes return, however, they will be allowed only between 11pm and 4am. Programmes beamed at any other time must be appropriate for viewing by children, the proposal under discussion says.

The government had banned adult content on television in 2006, allowing only programmes that had a “U” certificate from the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) for unrestricted public exhibition.

Its notification said that “no film, or film song or film promo or film trailer or music video or music albums or their promos, whether produced in India or abroad, shall be carried through cable service unless it has been certified by the CBFC as suitable for unrestricted public exhibition in India”.

Earlier, the government had banned programmes such as FTV’s Midnight Hot on the ground that they showed “skimpily dressed and semi-naked” women, which “violated good taste and decency and denigrated women”. It had stuck to this position despite pressure from broadcasters and certain rights groups.

The current rethink has been prompted by suggestions from a committee set up to review the Programme and Advertising Code under the Cable Television Network (Regulation) Act and the guidelines for certification of films under the Cinematograph Act.

“The ministry seems to have realised that keeping adult content out of TV would not only be difficult but also meaningless in this age. There is no point in acting as moral police, and there is a need for a more liberal approach,’’ a ministry official said.

The adult content will be restricted to films and music videos with “A” certification, the official added, saying: “Adult content need not mean pornography.”