The Office of Communications, or OfCom, has fined a number of Rs 19.8 lakh (£20,000) news Broadcast channel – Republic TV’s Hindi channel Republic Bharat in the UK. The channel aired a program that contained hate speech and offensive content due to which legal action was taken.
According to the report, the communication and broadcasting regulator during the program of ‘Poochta Hai Bharat’ had found three breaches by Worldview Media Network Limited, which aired on Republic Bharat on 6th September 2019. The program was anchored by Republic Media Network’s Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami. The program focuses on Indo-Pakistani relations and hatred among the communities. The regulator have prompted Arnav’s channel to air an apology of 279 times with a request that the regulator not to take any further action.
In an official statement, the regulator stated that an episode of the program ‘Poochta Hai Bharat’ contained comments made by the host – Arnav Goswami, and some of his guests give only hate speech against Pakistani people. They made derogatory and abusive treatment to the people of Pakistan.
The host, along with guests, called all the people of Pakistan terrorists. In the programs, comments like – “their scientists, doctors, their leaders, politicians all are terrorists. Even their sportspeople”; “every child is a terrorist over there… every child is a terrorist. You are dealing with a terrorist entity.”
The content was offensive and was not sufficiently justified by the context of Ofcom’s Breach Decision taking legal action against the channel.
The officials further stated that these statements are expressed as expressions of hatred based on Pakistani people’s imperialism based on their nationality. The broadcast of these statements spread, incited, promoted, and justified such discrimination towards Pakistani people among viewers.
Ofcom’s Executive board found that the program included “uncontextualized hate speech and that this content was probably too impertinent that breaches Rules 2.3, 3.2, and 3.3 of its broadcasting code.
However the Republic Bharat acknowledged as misjudgements made in this programme. In a report of The Scroll , the channel said that the amount of 20000 pound fine is a serious threatened to the ability to sustain the channel as the channel is running at a loss and that it didn’t even cover one month’s costs which is between in August 2019 and March 2020.
Now will the channel air 279 apologies and an amount of 20000 pounds as fine!
Article Written by Dikhya Mohanty
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