Govt clueless as cable operators transmit Peace TV illegally

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New Delhi, July 14: INTELSAT 12, Position: 45.0° East, Downlink Frequency: 11632, Symbol Rate: 27689, FEC: 5/6, Polarization: Vertical, Modulation: DVB-S, MPEG-2, Reach: India. This is the frequency details and the tuning method for the Peace TV in standard definition.

The details of the same are available on Peacetv.in, which belongs to the controversial Islamic preacher, Dr Zakir Naik.

Also read: Rs 15 crore funding to Zakir Naik's Islamic Research Foundation under scanner

Why govt has no clue about Peace TV?

While the government has initiated a probe against Naik, these details are still available on his website. Moreover cable operators and MSOs latch on to this beam and transmit the channel which does not have telecast rights in India.

First things first

The probe against Naik was initiated after it had been found that one of the Dhaka attackers was inspired by his speech. His speeches are freely available on the internet. The Peace TV also beams illegally in many parts of India. The website for the channel itself has put out details on how to tune it in India.

The website also gives out details on how to tune in various other countries such as Italy, UK, Europe, Africa, Middle East, USA, Canada, Caribbean Islands among others.

In most cases the cable operators latch on to the beam illegally and transmit it. The most number of cases in India have been found at Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.

Also read: Zakir Naik's return to India may take time

Apart from giving out the details on how to tune the channel, the website further has a list of programmes. Among the many programmes includes talk shows for India on an hourly basis starting at 3 pm and ending by 11 pm. The names of the speakers are listed and a variety subjects are discussed.

The government is now mulling on asking the NIA and the IB to probe these aspects. The brief would be to find out how these channels are beaming illegally in India.

Where India lacks?

The problem is that India has a law, but no mechanism to track the relay of illegal channels. Reports have been submitted on various occasions in the past by the Intelligence Bureau. It had red flagged 24 channels while referring them to channels of hate. Peace TV had been included in this list and the channel was refused a license in 2009.

Also read: 'Peace Schools' under scanner after ban on Zakir Naik's TV

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry continues to look at options on how to monitor the beaming of these channels and also its content. The other problem is that such channels are not being tracked as there is no monitoring capabilities.

Only the channels which have a license to transmit in India are monitored through the Electronic Media Monitoring Centre.

This would mean that the cases are filed against the channel or those relaying it only if a specific complaint is given.

A few years back in Hyderabad four persons were arrested for beaming an illegal channel. This had come to light only after a specific complaint had been lodged.

In short this means there is no mechanism to monitor such channels automatically.

OneIndia News

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