Explained: Why govt issued advisory to TV channels?
New Delhi, Apr 23: The Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Saturday issued a strong advisory to news channels against making false claims and using scandalous headlines. In a detailed advisory issued today, the Ministry has called for adherence to the provisions of Section 20 of The Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 including the Programme Code laid down under it.
It has released a list of instances when media houses allegedly made false claims, misquoting with scandalous headlines or taglines with respect to Russia-Ukraine coverage.
Similarly, on the recent incident in North-West Delhi, the coverage by the TV channels had provocative headlines and videos of violence that may incite communal hatred, airing unverified CCTV footages and fabricated headlines sensationalising and giving communal colours to the actions of authority
Reporting on Russia-Ukraine conflict
(i) One channel aired a news item 'Ukraine mein Atomi Hadkamp' on 18th April, 2022 during which it mentioned that Russia is planning a nuclear attack on Ukraine. It further sensationalised the situation and mentioned that the attack will happen in the coming few days. The report mis-quoted International agencies also.
(ii) Another channel indulged in war mongering continues to air factless speculations to an extent that had the tendency to infuse fear in the minds of viewers as it claimed that Russia has given a 24 hours deadline for the Nuclear attack on Ukraine
(iii) One channel aired baseless sensational news on 18th April, 2022 titled 'Parmanu Putin se pareshan Zelenski', 'Parmanu action ki chinta Zelenski ko depression' and aired several unverified claims misquoting foreign actors/agencies "Official Russian Media clearly states that 3rd World war has started". The channel even showed footage with false claims that the Russian President is carrying a "Nuclear briefcase" with him.
(iv) Another channel misreported and made unverified claims on 19th April one such claim was - 'US agency CIA believes that Russia will use Nuclear weapons on Ukraine'.
(v) One of the channels very frequently made sensational claims of Nuclear war, it aired the headline 'Nuclear Nisana! Hairatangej khulasa world war ka' on 19th April, 2022. The channel made several of these exploitative and scandalous 'war promoting' claims multiple times.
(vi) A prominent channel misguided viewers through misreporting under sensational headlines such as 'Ukraine se Putin ka parmanu plan taiyar?', 'Parmanu Hamla hona tay hai?' which was aired on 19th April, 2022. The channel frequently uses such misleading and unrelated taglines in its reporting.
yudha suru hoga?' on 19th April, 2022
(viii) A channel misguided viewers with unverified and incorrect news on the war. Anchors of many of these channels talk in hyperbole and make factually wrong comments even misquoting other sources. One such news titled 'Mariupol Finished! Full and final' on 20th April, 2022.
(ix) One channel aired fabricated pictures claiming to be the proof of the upcoming Nuclear attack on Ukraine. This completely speculative news story seems to be intending to misguide the viewers and arouse psychological upheavals inside them. The show titled 'Ye Raat Kayamat Wali Hai?' aired on 20th April 2022
(x) A journalist of one channel while reporting from Mykolaiv made several unfactual comments that seemed to be promoting war with statements such as 'Russia Parmanu Hamla Kab Karega? Kahan karega?' the channel used taglines s like ' 'Vishwa Yudha ke Muhane par Duniya' on 20th April, 2022.
North-West Delhi incident coverage
(i) 'Delhi mein Aman ke dushman kaun?' (Date: 16th April)
(ii) 'Badi Sajis Dange Wali, Karauli, Khargone vaya Delhi' (Date: 17th April, 2022)
(iii) A channel repeatedly carried a video clipping of a man belonging to a specific community carrying a sword.
(iv) Channels claims that this video depicts that it was pre-planned to spread violence in a religious procession. (19th April, 2022)
(v) Footage under heading: 'Hinsa se ek raat pehle sajis ka video' (Date:19th April, 2022)
(vi) Vote Bank Vs Majoritarian Politics (Date: 19th April, 2022)
(i) A news channel broadcast a programme titled 'Hunkar' on 20th April, 2022. During the debate several speakers used unparliamentary and derogatory language towards each other. It was also found that the overall tenor and tonality of the show remains very aggressive and disturbing. Such ambience has a tendency to negatively impact the viewers especially children and may have a long lasting psychological distress and subliminal impact on them.
(ii) A news channel debate show titled 'अली Vs बली, कह ांकह ांखलबली?' aired on 15th April, 2022 on the 'Loudspeaker rules' have instances where panellists have used derogatory terms and there were also some communal comments made during the show,
(iii)A journalist of a channel during a prime time show titled 'अली, बजरांगबलीपर खलबली' aired on 15th April, 2022, used instigating statements and derogatory references