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Pro Modi TV Barred from Airing Political Content

Friday 12 April 2019

NEW DELHI (Xinhua) — NaMo TV, a 24-hour channel exclusively promoting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the ruling Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP), was barred by the country’s election commission from airing any political content, officials said Friday.

The order to get certification of the content for broadcast came on Thursday night in the middle of the general election. “As NaMo TV/Content TV is sponsored by a political party, all recorded programs of political contents displayed on the channel/platform would be covered under the purview of the Commission’s Order”, read the order from the Election Commission of India (ECI). “Any political publicity materials/contents, being displayed on electronic media without the requisite certification from competent authority (MCMC in this case) should be removed immediately and any political content shall only be permitted strictly in accordance with the ECI instructions in this regard.”

NaMo TV showed up on satellite TV networks late last month, eliciting strong opposition from the opposition parties. Following the channel’s operations, the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) complained to ECI against the channel, saying it violated the model code of conduct that came into effect on March 10 with the announcement of elections.

On Wednesday, the commission stopped release of biopic of Modi for the duration of the general elections, saying any material disturbing the level playing field in favor of any political party or individual should not be displayed.

The first phase of the elections was held on Thursday and the remaining six phases would be completed until May 20.

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