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Opinion

Madras HC orders Tamil movie teaser removed from social media and ‘obscene’ TV ads

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In two cases, the Madurai court of the Madras high court ordered the government and the Tamil Nadu Center to ensure that ‘obscene’ content is removed from social media sites and television, noting that it will otherwise affect to young minds amid a surge in crimes against women. and kids.

Hearing a series of public interest litigation (PIL), on Wednesday, the court composed of judges N Kirubakaran and B Pugalendhi ordered that the advancement of a Tamil film, Irandam Kuthu, be removed from social media for spreading vulgarity (according to the Cinematography Act of 1952). ).

The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has given the film an ‘A’ rating after 32 cuts and it is scheduled for a Diwali premiere. It is a sequel to a 2018 film by the same director and belongs to the horror erotic comedy genre. The petition (submitted by a cultural group, Samuganeethi Kalvi Panpattu Maiyam) listed all the sexual innuendos in the teaser dialogue. It appealed that children attending online classes due to Covid-19 had the “possibility of an uncontrolled audience” of the film’s “vulgar and obscene teaser”. Although the petition sought an injunction against the film, the court said it was not within its limits to restrict the film.

“The court has also ordered criminal prosecution under sections 67 and 67a (of the Information Technology Act of 2000 which prohibits obscene and sexually explicit material). Then those who produced and directed the film will have to face the consequences, ”said a senior lawyer in the case who did not want to be named, as the court has not yet issued copies of his order.

“Social networks are a matter of state. So Tamil Nadu is the appropriate defendant to issue a notice directly to the intermediary, such as YouTube, to remove indecent content under section 39 of the IT Act, ”he said.

The court also ordered a provisional restriction on television commercials based on another petition that said condom advertisements “have a lewd interest” nature that should not be aired in the middle of movies and series.

“We are specifically against advertisements for contraceptives, underwear and soaps that promote virility,” says M. Purshothaman, attorney for the petitioner, KS Sagadevaraja.

The petition said that while contraceptives are a preventive measure against birth control and sexually transmitted diseases, the ad “does not need to explicitly show a sexual act,” which is contrary to sections 5 and 6 of the 1995 Cable Television Network Regulation Law.

“We urgently push this issue because children are hooked on television due to the pandemic and several movies will be shown during Diwali,” Purshothaman said.

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