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Why Pakistani channels are not shown in India
February 16, 2007 16:29 IST
India on Friday said it has not banned Pakistani channels from being telecast in the country.
He said the channels have not registered themselves with the authorities.
Information and Broadcasting Minister P R Dasmunsi said: "We have one simple rule, that any foreign channel has to register itself in India before being telecast. They did not register at all. We gave them enough time."
None of the Pakistani channels -- state-run PTV, ARY, Geo and QTV -- registered themselves with the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, he said.
Dasmunsi's clarification came in the wake of a complaint by visiting Pakistani Information Minister Tariq Azim, who said Indian cable operators were not showing any Pakistani channel while Pakistani cable operators showed most of the Indian channels.
Azim said even the hotel where all Pakistani officials and diplomats preferred to stay did not show a single Pakistani channel.
He urged India to allow the telecast of Pakistani channels that he felt could be a learning experience for Indians about life on the other side of the border.
A senior official in the information and broadcasting ministry said every foreign channel has to follow India's down linking and up linking guidelines and register itself.
"We gave them six months till May 2006, after the guidelines were issued in December 2005. It was further extended by six months. But they did not apply," he said.On the other hand, Qatar-based Al-Jazeera, unlike the Pakistani channels, had applied and its application was pending clearance by the home ministry. "It seems they did not apply because once a channel is registered, its accountability increases, especially in terms of broadcast content," the official said.