I have been a champion of the freedom of expression for over a half-a-century. But today I stand disillusioned after seeing some of our so-called reality shows and television serials. They can be produced only by people with warped minds. As for the audience that watches these programmes, the less said the better. The government has taken some half-hearted steps to rein in shows that air objectionable content and ordered a couple of shows to be moved to late night slots (a move promptly challenged in court). Knowing our children, I am sure many will insist on staying up late to watch the shows. With all the technological power our country boasts of, developing a mechanism to censor not only our television shows but also some commercials should not be impossible.
The demand by the National Commission for Women that the Prohibition of Indecent Representation of Women and Children Bill 2008 be passed immediately (Nov. 20) to ensure the monitoring of the content on the electronic media is welcome. But are not some commercial advertisements more vulgar and indecent? The ads for deodorants are a case in point.
Reality shows which border on obscenity and the vulgar exposure of women should be banned immediately considering their negative impact on the minds of vulnerable adolescents. That the television channel, Colors, obtained an order from the Bombay High Court staying the government's order to shift the timing of Bigg Boss has underscored the importance of setting up an independent regulatory authority to monitor the content aired on television.
Of what use to viewers is Bigg Boss, which shows the routine lives of some celebrities staying together in a big house for a few days? The act of inviting foreigners with the sole objective of promoting viewership and paying them a whopping sum for their transient presence is irrational. The government should not only ban such worthless and time-consuming shows but also direct the producers to use their money on useful activities.
I do not think the government is playing the role of a nanny in this issue. There has to be some censorship of such shows because their themes and content are getting to be questionable. In order to increase TRP, producers and scriptwriters resort to the use of objectionable ideas often backed by abusive language.
Arun Kumar Garg,