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Digital Media: High Court Seeks Government Response on New IT Rules | India News


NEW DELHI: The HC Delhi on Tuesday requested the Center’s response to a petition challenging the new rules of information technology in digital media.
A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Judge Jasmeet Singh issued notices to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and allowed them time to submit their response to a series of petitions. The petitioners are the Foundation for Independent Journalism and publishers of two news websites.
The petitioners argue that the new IT rules issued on February 25 are palpably illegal in trying to control and regulate digital news outlets when the parent IT Act nowhere provides for such a mandate.
They have tried to declare “TI rules null and void insofar as they define and apply to publishers of news and current affairs content.”
The petitioners urged the Superior Court to grant them provisional protection so that the authorities do not take coercive measures against the digital media until the next hearing date on April 16.
The HC only said that if the Center takes any enforcement action, the petitioners can move to court with a request.
Defender Nitya Ramakrishnan, on behalf of the petitioners, argued that regulation of news content is not within the purpose of the Information Technology (IT) Law. “I am not talking about OTT platforms and social networks. I am only concerned with the media and current affairs. The new rules go far beyond what is allowed in a democracy, ”he argued.
The petition attacks the new rules, as they classify “publishers of current news and content” as part of “digital media”, and seeks to regulate these news portals under the Rules by imposing government supervision and a “Code of Ethics “, which stipulates conditions as vague as” good taste “and” decency “. The petitioners said that they publish fully digital news and current affairs publications and are directly affected by this overreach.

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