New Delhi: Online streaming platforms do not require any certification or approval from the Censor Board (CBFC) before releasing any feature film or Original series on their platform. However, the ministry of information and broadcasting is all set to roll out certification for online OTT content.
The I&B ministry along with the ministry for electronics and information technology (MEITy) will soon start organising a meeting with stakeholders to discuss regulating and certifying online content.
On Saturday 31st August, the I&B minister Prakash Javadekar informed a gathering of the film industry and Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) members that the meeting will be organised soon.
The government plans to meet representatives from OTT platforms, members of civil society, the technical community, media, ISPs and legal experts to discuss the issue even further.
The latest move to regulate online content comes from negative feedback from some religious groups on the dystopian Netflix original series Leila, as the religious groups alleged that certain Netflix shows and content have created “suspicion and distrust” for Hinduism and “maligned its symbols”.
During the past OTT streaming platforms voluntarily adopted a self-regulatory Code of Best Practices under the IAMAI. While the government can not regulate online content as these platforms don’t come under the Cinematograph Act of 1952.
However, During March 2019, the Karnataka High Court in response to public interest litigation (PIL), has asked the ministry to speed up the action on online content. The petition filed by Padmanabh Shankar states that there is a lack of legislative framework regulating the broadcast of films, serials etc on the internet through these platforms. The bench had issued a notice seeking these video streaming platform to be brought under the act.