Govt to Introduce Law to Regulate Digital Media: I&B Minister Anurag Thakur

Information & Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur.

Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said the centre is working on a bill to regulate digital media. He said that news dissemination used to be one-way, but with the development of electronic and digital media, news dissemination is developing in a multi-dimensional direction.

He said on Wednesday that even small news from villages can now reach state platforms via digital media. In a statement, Thakur said the government had left most of the print, electronic and digital media to self-regulation.

“Digital media presents both opportunities and challenges. To strike a delicate balance, the government will look at what can be done in this regard.

“I would say that change has to be enshrined in law, and we will make your job simple and easy. We are working on a bill,” Thakur said at an event organised by the Hindi news daily Mahanagar Times.

Thakur also said that the registration process for newspapers would be simplified and that the central government would soon introduce a new law to replace the 1867 Press and Books Registration Act.

Under the new law, the registration process, which currently takes about four months, can be completed in a week through online mode.

The minister also said newspapers should provide the public with the “right news” at the “right time”. He said that in addition to the government’s shortcomings, the government’s public welfare projects and policies should also benefit the people.

He urged the media to work “responsibly” and avoid creating an atmosphere of “fear and confusion”. Thakur assured journalists that the centre would look after their interests, adding that financial assistance had been provided to the families of journalists who died of Covid-19.

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