NaMo TV a Special Channel, Doesn’t Need Govt Nod: I&B Min to EC
The ministry has also reportedly said that NaMo TV has been rented by a political party for a period of time.
The Information and Broadcasting Ministry is learnt to have responded to an Election Commission notice on NaMo TV on Friday, 5 April, saying it is a special service channel or platform available on DTH operators, and does not require a government nod.
The I&B Ministry further purportedly said that a legal loophole exists for such services, which the EC can ask the ministry to plug, reported The Indian Express.
A report in The Print cited the ministry as saying that NaMo TV has been rented by a political party for a period of time. It also cited government sources as saying that the expenses incurred by NaMo TV “will be reflected in the BJP’s election expenses.”
Meanwhile, news agency PTI cited the ministry as saying that NaMo TV is an advertisement platform launched by DTH service providers.
The ministry also said that NaMo TV is not a regular channel and it does not figure in the official list of approved channels, a source cited by PTI said.
The I&B ministry told the poll panel that as per the existing norms, no approval is required from it to run such advertising platforms, the source said.
Notably, the controversial channel is available across multiple DTH platforms, unlike value-added platforms that are exclusively under specific DTH operators.
On Tuesday, the EC had issued a notice seeking a report from the ministry on NaMo TV, launched just weeks ahead of the general election, after Opposition parties, including the Congress, asked the poll body to direct the ministry to suspend the channel as it was violative of the Model Code of Conduct.
The EC will take a call on whether it violated the model code after going through the documents the ministry files.
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