The Narendra Modi government is consulting with news broadcasters over the nitty gritties of the newly mandated compulsory slot for airing content of “national importance”.
On November 9, the information and broadcasting ministry released guidelines for uplinking and downlinking of satellite TV channels. But some of the guidelines provoked more chatter than the rest. This pertained to a compulsory 30-minute slot on “themes of national importance and social relevance”.
I&B ministry officials told Newslaundry that executives from news broadcasters, including NDTV, Zee and TV9, have already met with bureaucrats in the ministry.
“There will be more consultation with news channels and non-news channels this week,” Abhinav Singh, deputy director in the ministry’s media and coordination department, told Newslaundry. “After that, we will release an advisory with details.”
The slot, according to the guidelines, may cover themes like “education and spread of literacy”, “agriculture and rural development”, “health and family welfare”, “science and technology”, “welfare of women”, “welfare of the weaker sections of the society”, “protection of environment and of cultural heritage”, and “national integration”.
It’s the timing and content of the compulsory slot that’s the subject of ongoing consultations with the ministry.