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"Open To Petitioner To Switch Off TV ": Madras HC Disposes Of Plea Against Sanskrit News Telecast On Doordharsan

Sparsh Upadhyay
15 Feb 2021 4:58 PM GMT
Open To Petitioner To Switch Off TV : Madras HC Disposes Of Plea Against Sanskrit News Telecast On Doordharsan
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Noting that it is a matter for the Government to decide, the Madras High Court last month disposed of a plea filed against Sanskrit news telecast on Doordharasan Podhigai Tamil Television Channel. The Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice M. M. Sundresh also observed, "It is open to the petitioner to switch off the television and get some other form of entertainment...

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Noting that it is a matter for the Government to decide, the Madras High Court last month disposed of a plea filed against Sanskrit news telecast on Doordharasan Podhigai Tamil Television Channel.

The Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice M. M. Sundresh also observed,

"It is open to the petitioner to switch off the television and get some other form of entertainment during the period the Sanskrit news is read."

The Bench also noted that the Doordharsan channel has limited viewership and that the news read in Sanskrit hardly takes up a fraction of the entire day.

The Petitioner S. Muthukumar sought a writ of mandamus forbearing the respondents 1 to 4 from telecasting Sanskrit news in Doordarshan Podhigai Tamil Television Channel.

[Respondents 1 to 4 were Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, The Chairman Prasar Bharati, The Director-General, Doordarshan and The Director, Doordarshan Kendra]

Further, a direction was sought to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to allot funds equally for the development of all languages found in the eighth schedule of Constitution of India by considering the petitioner's email representation dated 16th December 2020 in accordance with the law.

To this, the Court said,

"There are matters of greater social concern, which need to be addressed and such petty issues need not be looked into by the Court."

The Court also said,

"When the writ petitioner does not find the Sanskrit seems to be tasteful or useful, there is no compulsion for the petitioner to tune in"

The Court also hoped that the petitioner keeps up his public spirit and brings matters involving public interest to Court.

Lastly, the writ petition was disposed of with liberty to the petitioner to make an appropriate representation to such authorities that may receive it and consequently, connected miscellaneous petition was closed.

Case title - S. Muthukumar v. The Government of India Secretary to Government Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and others [W.P.(MD) No.19651 of 2020 and W.M.P.(MD) No.16378 of 2020]

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