New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The government of India on Wednesday issued an executive order to bring the online news portals and current affairs programmes along with online films and audio-visual programmes made available by the online content provider under the purview of Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

Presently there is no law or any regulatory body for the regulation of online content provided on various OTT platforms, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos, online news portals among others, which are accessible over the internet or ride on an operator's network.

The notification, signed by the President Ram Nath Kovind, was issued on Monday. The notification came a month after the Supreme Court sought a response by the Centre on a plea to regulate OTT platforms by an autonomous body. The apex court also issued notices to the Centre, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and Internet and Mobile Association of India. 

In the petition, it was stated that "OTT/Streaming and different digital media platforms have surely given a way out for filmmakers and artists to release their content without being worried about getting clearance certificates for their films and series from the censor board". 

Meanwhile, the I&B Ministry, earlier in a separate case, told the Supreme Court that there is a need to supervise the digital media content and asked the court to first appoint a committee of persons as amicus before preparing the guidelines with respect to the regulation of hate speeches in the digital media platforms. 

I&B Minister Prakash Javadekar had also said that the government will not take any step to restrict media freedom, adding that there must be a regulation on Over-the-top (OTT) platforms to some extent as there is for print, electronic media and films. 

In India, the Press Council of India regulates the print media, the News Broadcasters Association looks after the news channels, the Advertising Standards Council of India monitors the advertising and the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) supervise films. 

Posted By: Talib Khan