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No news content on Non-news channels, directs MIB after Zee News tweet

Following news reports of the Zee network planning to provide coverage of the Counting Day on Zee TV (a GEC) and Zee ETC (a Bollywood-centric channel), along with Zee News, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has directed all TV channels to strictly ensure that there is no violation of its Guidelines that clearly demarcates the News and Non-news categories. Earlier in the day, Adgully had carried a report that brought to notice a tweet by Zee News Hindi, which stated that it would be providing global coverage of the Counting Day across over 170 countries on Zee News, Zee TV and Zee ETC. 

Read more: MIB hikes ad rates for private TV channels

In its letter issued today (May 22, 2019) to the News Broadcasters Association (NBA) President Rajat Sharma and Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) President NP Singh, the MIB pointed out that in accordance with the Policy Guidelines for the Uplinking of Television Channels from India, 2011, the Ministry gives permission for uplinking of TV channels under 2 categories:

  1. Non-news & current affairs; and
  2. News & current affairs

As per the guidelines, News Channels are mandated to carry news and current affairs content, while Non-news & Current Affairs Channels do not have any element of news and current affairs in their programme content. 

Further, in its letter issued, the MIB stated, “At the time of applying for a Non-news TV channel, the applicant company gives an undertaking that the proposed channel is purely an entertainment channel and does not have any news or current affairs based programme.”

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