NRI Dunia
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Supreme Court notice to Centre on plea to regulate OTT platforms

The Supreme Court today issued a notice to the Centre on a PIL seeking the setting up of an autonomous body to regulate “over the top” (OTT) platforms, including Netflix and Amazon Prime, that provide paid film and television content to consumers via the Internet.

A three-judge Bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde asked the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and the Internet and Mobile Association of India to respond to the PIL filed by advocate Shashank Shekhar Jha.

The government had earlier told the court in Sudarshan News case that there was a need to regulate digital media in the country.

Jha wanted the top court to direct the government to set up a body for monitoring content on different OTT/streaming and digital media platforms.“With cinemas unlikely to open anytime soon in the country, OTT/streaming and different digital media platforms have surely given a way out to filmmakers and artistes to release their content without getting any clearance certificate from the censor board,” Jha submitted.

He said there was no law or autonomous body to monitor and manage the digital content made available to the public.

None of the OTT/streaming platforms, including Netflix, Amazon Prime, Zee5, and Hotstar, had committed to self-regulation norms, the petitioner contended.

“The government is facing heat to fill this lacuna with regulations from the public and the judiciary; still the relevant government departments have not done anything significant to regularise these OTT/streaming platforms,” the petition read.