“Censorship is a powerful political tool in a country like India.”
So said Anurag Kashyap in an interview with Hindustan Times long ago. In his interview with Rohan Naahar, the director also believes that “online streaming will change everything” and that he will continue to make cinema even if some films are more suitable for streaming.
Well, now after a new notification issued by central government, OTT platforms like Netflix, Prime Video, Hotstar and several others will be regulated by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B Ministry). Effective immediately, the order brings all platforms back to the ministry, led by Prakash Javadekar.
The Indian Express spoke with notable names in the film industry, who expressed their disappointment with the government’s new order. Filmmaker Hansal Mehta recounted Indian Express, “While this decision was not unexpected, it is still a cause for despair. This desperation for control of freedom of speech and expression does not bode well. I am currently very disappointed. “
Mehta was right when he said that this notification was a “reason for desperation” because Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Babul Supriyo was just echoing our worst fears.
In one interview with Bollywood Hungama, the BJP minister said: “It would all be reasonable. It’s not like we’re suddenly going to crack down on OTT content. Filmmakers on the digital platform would still have comparatively much more freedom than on the big screen. The only thing is that the freedom will not be unlimited. You won’t be allowed to go on an abusive frenzy like (in) Mirzapur. Who swears so much at every opportunity? “
Supriyo also added that age restrictions should be placed on this content on OTT platforms. “We are not in the moral police. We just want children to be protected from viewing content that is not suitable for them, ”Supriyo added.
While streaming platforms in India are notorious for censoring content themselves following outrage on social media or alleged government demands, this is clearly not enough.
While the push for censorship is presented as a fear that children will see nudity or listen to foul language on screen, many can’t help but think that the need for OTT regulation is highly political.
“I certainly don’t want my growing child exposed to some of the things that I see on a lot of channels and a lot of international broadcasts coming into our homes. [There is a] a lot of very poor representation of India and Indian society reflected, ”said Minister of Railways Piyush Goyal during remarks made to FICCI e-FRAMES 2020 first reported by mint.
“Maybe other countries have had complete freedom to do and say whatever you want and show. But look at the levels of cultural depravity that we see many other times. Look at what their children are going through. Look at their broken families, ” Goyal added.
After all, “Parampara, Pratishtha, Anushasan. Yeh iss Gurukul ke teenager stambh hai. Yeh woh aadarsh hain jinse hum aapka aane waala kal banaate hain.
(Header credits: an image from Sacred Games)
Hi, I am Divya I am A Digital Marketer with 5+ years of experience in marketing on various platform. I love to write about technology and various blogs about Dermatology, Neurology, Urology and Giving Reviews about the best doctors in these industries.