Group of news broadcasters is challenging the state’s digital media rules at Kerala High Court.

Is India a Democratic Country? Do we follow or understand the words mentioned in the Constitution of India? Do we as Indians have any freedom of speech and expression? Do we as Indians have a right to privacy? These are broad questions raised by every individual to Government and Court.The Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, was passed in February, laying out for the first time how the government would oversee digital news organizations, social media platforms, and OTT streaming services like Netflix.
The News Broadcasters Association, a group of 25 leading news and current affairs broadcasters, has filed a lawsuit in Kerala’s High Court, alleging that the government’s new digital media rules give authorities “excessive powers to unreasonably and impermissibly restrict (media’s) freedom of speech and expression.”
The Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines & Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, are also ultra vires or in violation of the current Information Technology Act of 2000, as well as Articles 14 and 19 of the Indian Constitution, according to the NBA’s appeal.
The specific issue at hand is establishing an oversight mechanism that gives the government “unrestricted, unrestrained, and unreasonable powers to oversee the content of digital news media.”
The NBA also claimed that the ‘Code of Ethics’ contains “vague, imprecise, and ambiguous expressions in respect to ‘content,’ such as ‘good taste,’ and ‘snobbish attitude,'” which violate the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Section 66A of the IT Act.
As a result, all digital media sites will be required to have a complaint resolution mechanism in place with compliance officers and monitor and remove offensive content and produce compliance reports.

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