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RELEVANCE : Article 19 (1)(a) – Freedom of speech and expression – Under this topic usually freedom of press is a crucial area often asked by UPSC – thus while any question crops up you can refer this CA to score more

OR – If same facts has been asked as question – quoting these facts would definitely make you stand out of the crowd.

What happened ?

A petition has been filed by BJP member asking the authorities to safeguard the privacy of people and that media retailers should not invade the privacy of people by breaching the regulations.

The story to know : The petitioner talked about the viral video clips of Karnataka MLA in which he could be seen getting intimate with an unidentified lady and stated that media is intruding into private life of the people which is abrogation of person’s Right to Privacy guaranteed under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution.

Interim order

The court in its interim order directed that ay broadcast in the media ruled by the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 must be strictly in conformity with the phrases of ‘Programme Code’ outlined below the Act.

Relevant legislations:

Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995- Section 5 of the Act provides-

“No person shall transmit or re-transmit through a cable service any programme under such programme is in conformity with the prescribed programme code.”

Section 19 provides for prohibiting transmission of certain programmes in public interest.

Section 20 provides that Central government may by order regulate or prohibit the transmission of any channel or programme if it thinks that it is necessary to do so in the interest of-

· Sovereignty or integrity of India

· Security of India

· Friendly relations of India with any foreign State, or

· Public order, decency or morality

Information Technology Act, 2000- Section 66E provides any person who intentionally or knowingly captures, publishes or transmits the image of a private area of any person without his or her consent amounts to violation of his or her privacy and shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to three years or with fine not exceeding two lakh rupees, or with both.

Indecent Representation of Women Prohibition Act, 1986- Section 4 of the Act prohibits publication or sending by post of books, pamphlets, paper, slide, film, writing, photograph etc. containing indecent representation of women. Any person found to violate the provisions of this Section shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to 2 years and with fine upto Rs. 2000 on first conviction and imprisonment of 6 months to 5 years and fine of Rs. 10,000 – 1 Lakh on subsequent conviction.

Article 19 of the Constitution- It provides Freedom of Press under 19(1)(a) but this freedom is subject to reasonable restrictions provided under clause 2.

Article 21 of the Constitution- It provides that no person shall be deprived of his life and or personal liberty according to the procedure established by law.

In KS Puttaswamy v. Union of India, the apex court held that ‘Right to Privacy’ is a fundamental right which is intrinsic under Article 21 of the Constitution of India.

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