The Delhi High Court on Thursday issued notice on a plea moved by a TV channel challenging an earlier court order that refused to interfere with the 'penalty warning' of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting over a video showing cruelty against an elephant.
Pointing out to the visuals of an elephant being beaten mercilessly without warning or blurring the video broadcast on February 22 last year, the court had refused to interfere with the TV Today Network Limited's plea.
The court had observed that a professional broadcaster must bear in mind "the minimum precautions which must be exercised while broadcasting content which may cause distress to...an ordinary and prudent viewer."
Challenging the earlier court order, the channel was again approaching the court with an appeal.
Issuing a notice in the matter, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad slated the next hearing for January 19, 2023.
The bench also observed that the video should have been blurred. "While the act of the petitioner (TV channel) in bringing that incident to the notice of the viewers and thus highlighting the issue of cruelty towards animals is not intended to be deprecated, the Court would have hoped that a professional broadcaster would have borne in mind the minimum precautions which must be exercised while broadcasting content which may cause distress and disturb the sensibilities of an ordinary and prudent viewer," the earlier order delivered by Justice Yashwant Varma said.
Further, the court in its order said: "..it is not disputed that the visual clips which were originally broadcast were neither blurred nor did the presenter forewarn the viewing public to exercise discretion bearing in mind the barbaric action of the caretakers and the pain and distress of the animal which was displayed... Accordingly and for all the aforesaid reasons, the challenge to the impugned order fails." (IANS)
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