TV channel not to telecast video clips

Staff Reporter

MADURAI: The Madras High Court Bench here on Friday recorded an undertaking given by counsel for a private Tamil television news channel that it will not continue to telecast video clips in which a person purported to be Swami Nithyananda of Dharmapeetam is found in a compromising position with an actor.

The undertaking was given before a Division Bench, comprising Justices F.M. Ibrahim Kalifulla and K.B.K. Vasuki. The judges admitted two public interest litigation petitions filed by a couple of lawyers from Madurai and Tirunelveli to initiate action against Sun TV channel for airing “obscene” video clips and adjourned the hearing to April 9.

The court directed the Assistant Solicitor General to take notice on behalf of the Union Home Ministry and the Union Ministry for Information and Broadcasting.

A Special Government Pleader was asked to accept notice on behalf of the Director General of Police, Madurai Collector and Police Commissioner. The television channel was ordered to file its counter affidavit within four weeks.

The Judges made it clear that the undertaking given by the channel would not have a bearing on a civil suit for defamation pending before a lower court.

Earlier, counsel for the channel said that the undertaking given by them in the present public interest litigation petitions should not be allowed to be utilised in the civil suit filed in private interest.