The I&B ministry on 27 July issued an advisory to all television channels not to broadcast the live coverage of anti-terrorist operations by security forces.
In an advisory, the ministry reiterated that the Cable Television Networks (Amendment) Rules, 2015, state that the media coverage shall be restricted to periodic briefing by an officer designated by the appropriate government till such operation concludes and that the interest of national security, live coverage of counter-terrorism operations by security forces should not be telecast.
The ministry further stated that it has been brought to its notice that “during today’s ongoing anti-terrorist operations in Gurdaspur, Punjab, some News and Current Affairs TV channels have carried telecast of these operations without restricting themselves to periodic briefing by an officer designated by the appropriate Government, though the operations had not been concluded”.
“Such telecast is in clear violation of the Cable Television Networks (Amendment) Rules, 2015, and is therefore liable for action thereunder. Therefore, it is hereby advised to desist from further violation of the above said Rules with immediate effect,” the I&B advisory stated.
The live coverage of an anti-terror operations in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district on March 20 had also prompted the I&B Ministry to issue an advisory asking broadcasters to not air live such operations to avoid any adverse impact on rescue exercise. At that time, the I&B ministry had asked TV channels not to focus on location, strength, movement, strategy and related operations being followed by security forces engaging with the terrorists. It had further advised all TV channels to safeguard innocent lives and ensure that no operations-linked information reaches the terrorists and their handlers. “In the interest of national security, live coverage of counter-terrorism operations by security forces should not be telecast,” the I&B Ministry advisory had stated.