TVNZ upholds hundreds of complaints over Henry's "India race slur" comments

Posted By: Nitsi
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Wellington, Oct 18 (ANI): Television New Zealand has reportedly upheld hundreds of complaints over "offensive" comments by its former Breakfast host Paul Henry.

According to, TVNZ received at least 600 complaints after Henry questioned whether or not Governor General Anand Satyanand was a New Zealander because he did not look or sound like one.

He was also criticised and had to ultimately resign over his mocking comments against the Delhi Chief Minister Shelia Dikshit.

In complaint responses issued today, TVNZ said that each broadcast had breached three standards of good taste and decency, fairness and discrimination and denigration and therefore it upheld the complaints.

"The Complaints Committee sincerely apologises to you for the breach of Broadcasting Standards. We understand that you were deeply offended by Paul Henry's comments," TVNZ added.

It lists a series of actions taken in the wake of the comments about Sir Anand, which were broadcast on October 4.

The actions resulted in TVNZ chairman Sir John Anderson and chief executive Rick Ellis tendering a written apology to Sir Anand at Government House in Auckland on October 11.

The response also addresses comments made by TVNZ spokeswoman Andi Brotherston in the hours after Henry's comments, who claimed that Henry was prepared to say the things "we quietly think but are scared to say out loud".

TVNZ's complaints committee said it could not consider Brotherston's comment because it did not fall within its legal scope.

It also addresses Henry's comments about Dikshit.

"Mr Henry repeatedly refers to her as (phonetically) Shelia Dik Shit ... Mr Henry also attempts to make a joke about the scatological meaning of Ms Dikshit's name," the response states. (ANI)

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