The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has slapped a show-cause notice on India TV seeking an explanation on whether the episode featuring Bihar MPs allegedly caught in sexual antics violated the Programme Code or not.
According to Government sources, the I&B Ministry has said that this appears to have offended good taste and decency. Also, this is being viewed as "obscene and likely to corrupt public morality and was not suited for unrestricted public exhibition." The channel has been given time to respond to the notice.
In fact, a former BJP MP from Bijnore, Mr Shish Ram Singh Ravi, has already filed a case against the channel, including its CEO, Mr Rajat Sharma, and other executives, for airing "obscene" video-clips by "morphing" pictures. He along with four other politicians were featured in the series Bhaiya Bole.
When contacted, Mr Sharma said: "A show-cause notice has been received from the I&B Ministry. We have sent a letter in reply for their consideration."
India TV has been airing a series of sting operations featuring politicians, film and TV actors. Mr Sharma said that there are some more exposé, which would be aired at an "appropriate time".
Meanwhile, the I&B Minister, Mr Jaipal Reddy, at a CII conference today on the `Future of newspapers in the world', said that he was not opposed to investigative journalism - sting or otherwise.
However, he added that sting operations were acceptable as long as they maintained decency and did not venture into porno journalism.