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Government contemplates single law to regulate all media as IT Rules face legal challenges

Little is known of the umbrella legislation other than it will draw from existing laws; meanwhile, the IT Rules and its provisions are being challenged by stakeholders in various Indian courts. The Government of India is considering a single piece of legislation to regulate traditional and digital media companies, according to a report in the Hindustan Times. The report cited unnamed and an unclear number of government officials.  The legal footing of the IT Rules has recently come under scrutiny, with the Bombay High Court staying provisions requiring digital media organisations to self-regulate. That judgement has said that the Rules exceed the remit of subordinate legislation, giving the government all the more reason to achieve its objectives with a fresh act, perhaps one that will draw from elements of the IT Rules.  What do we know about the legislation? Very little is known about the details of the draft bill as it is still in the discussion stage. The HT report, however, lays down the following aspects:  It is an umbrella law that aims to cover print and electronic media, digital media, cinema, and OTT platforms.  Government officials said that the legislation plans to draw from:  The Cable Television (Regulation) Network Act, 1995 The Cinematograph Act, 1952 The Press Council Act, 1978 The Information Technology (Intermediary Liability and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 Dhanya Rajendran, Founder & Editor-in-Chief, The News Minute, believes that the Union government is now attempting to take a different approach as "it has understood that pushing…

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I cover several beats such as Crypto, Telecom, and OTT at MediaNama. I can be found loitering at my local theatre when I am off work consuming movies by the dozen.

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