The central government has issued a notification, bringing digital news platforms, OTT platforms, and content providers under the ambit of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B Ministry). Presently, there is no autonomous body or law regulating digital content.
The order will effectively bring OTT platforms such as Netflix, Hotstar, and Amazon Prime Video etc. under the ministry, headed by Prakash Javadekar.
The Centre, in its notification dated Tuesday, November 9 announced that the President has signed the order to comprise current affairs, digital news and film content under the authority of the I&B ministry.
"In the Government of India (Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961, in the second schedule under the heading 'Ministry of Information and Broadcasting' after entry 22, the following sub-heading and entries shall be inserted, namely: Films and audio-visual programmes made available by online content providers; news and current affairs content on online platforms," read the notification dated Tuesday, 9 November," the government notification read.
Government issues order bringing online films and audio-visual programmes, and online news and current affairs content under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. pic.twitter.com/MoJAjW8fUH— ANI (@ANI) November 11, 2020
Meanwhile, the (I&B) ministry sources told India Today that the order has been issued "simply to bring 'content' from under the purview of IT to I&B" adding that although OTT is a new platform, where concerns regarding content couldn't be raised the Centre earlier, this would be possible now that it will be the nodal ministry for the same.