New Delhi : Broadcasting Content Complaints Council (BCCC) has received several complaints raising concern over the depiction of occult, superstition, black magic, exorcism and witchcraft in television programmes, especially in the portrayal of women in a negative manner.
While respecting the channels’ creative liberties, the Council believes that such portrayal should not be exaggerated and, therefore, considers it desirable to lay down certain guidelines for broadcasters and content creators.
Given the reach and impact of television as a medium, BCCC advises all member channels of Indian Broadcasting Foundation to exercise necessary restraint in showing such content.
The Council also believes that should any such depiction become absolutely necessary in line with the story, the channel must run a scroll during its telecast, disapproving of any such practice and describing it as a work of fiction.
If the content is based predominantly on themes of occult, superstition, black magic, exorcism and witchcraft, the channel should air such a programme during restrictive viewing hours.
Though BCCC does not support programmes based on superstition, it expects the channels to exercise maximum discretion in showing such content.
In keeping with Article 51 A (h) of the Indian Constitution, which urges citizens to develop scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform, BCCC believes that any such unreasonable and unjustifiable representation could have serious repercussions.
This Advisory should be read in consonance with relevant legislations enacted by some states that have witnessed a rise in killings as a result of various social evils, most particularly witchcraft, practised by people inspired by superstitions.