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Comprehensive broadcast legislation on cards: I

Written by: Staff
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Mumbai, Mar 22: A comprehensive broadcast legislation is in the offing to codify all the related executive decisions, Information and Broadcasting Secretary S K Arora today said.

Addressing the inaugural session of 'Frames 2006', the three-day global convention on the business of entertainment organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) here, Mr Arora said so far all the regulations in broadcast industry have come through only by executive decisions and time has come to codify them.

''A draft legislation in this regard is being prepared in consultation with all stakeholders,'' he said.

On the need to regulate content of the broadcast industry, he said the Government has taken a 'middle path' to protect the interests of the industry and the civil society, as well.

''We would prefer the industry to go for self regulation and if it does not happen, the Government would go for codifying executive decisions,'' he said.

Referring to the synergy between telecom and broadcast, Mr Arora said the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has taken a stand that content and the carrier need separate regulators.

''We would like the synergy to take place first as in the case of Indian industry, growth precedes regulations,'' he said.

On the recent judicial pronouncement on the conditional access system (CAS), Mr Arora said, ''We will have to find solution to the issue as soon as possible.'' He said even as the Government had initiated efforts for the CAS three years ago, it could not materialise due to several reasons. He, however, did not elaborate further.

The I&B secretary also emphasised on export of Indian Film and Entertainment Industry to achieve its growth rate target.

The industry is witnessing a phenomenal growth and is slated to grow at 19 per cent annum to Rs 83,740 crore by 2010 from its current size of Rs 35,300 crore, he mentioned.

On the occasion, FICCI entertainment committee Chairman Yash Chopra said the industry is at a progressive stage today as opportunities and growth embrace all its segments.

''The country is today producing some of the finest films based on varied subjects and winning accolades on all counts,'' he maintained.

UNI

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