Underlining the importance of freedom of expression, the Ministry of Electronics, Information and Technology (MeitY) has told the Delhi High Court that MeitY cannot ask Netflix to remove the alleged objectionable reference to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in its Sacred Games series. It can be read here: Nikhil Bhalla case (pdf). The Centre, in its response, “humbly submitted that the preamble of the Constitution of India inter alia speaks of liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship. It also says that India is a sovereign democratic republic. The liberty of thought and expression is a cardinal value that is of paramount significance under our constitutional scheme.” In the petition, advocate Nikhil Bhalla had requested the court to issue guidelines for regulating OTT media service providers. He had also petitioned before the court to direct the Centre to set up a grievance redressal mechanism to specifically deal with grievances against OTT platforms, operating within the territory of India. Centre's submission against new regulations for OTT platforms MeitY, in its response, told the Delhi High Court, “that the Information Technology Act 2000 provides for disablement of content for public access.” In the affidavit filed by MeitY’s counsel Rajesh Gogna, Centre submitted that The SC placed the onus on the intermediaries to disable access to information that is deemed unfit under the IT Act, 2000. The onus is on the intermediary to remove or disable any such material must strictly conform to subject matters laid down in article 19(2) of the Indian Constitution. Note…
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