The central government on 23 September told the Supreme Court that it has issued a show-cause notice to the Sudarshan News channel in connection with its ‘Bindas Bol’ program, in which the channel alleged that Muslims were “infiltrating civil services” and that they were receiving monetary aid from foreign “terrorist outfits” for the cause.
The government asked the channel as to why action should not be taken for violation of program code in the broadcast of the show. The notice was issued under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told a bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud that the notice issued on 23 September has asked the channel to tender its explanation by 5 pm September 28, failing which ex parte decision will be taken.
The bench said that since the notice is stated to be ‘returnable’ on September 28, Mehta has requested the Court to defer the hearing in the present case so as to enable the central government to take a considered view of the matter.
Since the notice has been issued today, the hearing is deferred to October 5, the court said.
It added, “The notice shall be dealt with in accordance with law and the Central Government shall submit a report to this Court indicating the outcome of the notice”.
The top court on 15 September had stayed the broadcast of the program. Till then, the channel had reportedly streamed four episodes of the show.