EC to Come Down Hard on Paid News in Electronic Media

New Delhi
EC to Come Down Hard on Paid News in Electronic Media

Voicing concern over the practise of paid news, Delhi's Chief Electoral Officer Vijay Dev today said the Election Commission will put special focus on electronic media in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls to curb the menace.

Addressing a workshop on media's role in the electoral process, Dev appealed to the electronic media to provide "tips" to the Election Commission to detect cases of paid news or if political parties or individual candidates approach channels for such favours.

"We will focus on the electronic media to effectively deal with the problem," Dev said.

Asking media to take prior certification from the Election Commission for any election related advertisements, he said every effort will be made to come down hard on those involved in paid news.

"I appeal to the electronic media to give us tips to take on those involved in paid news. Right thinking media persons should help us in combating the challenge. We have some limitations of law. But still we are determined to take the challenge," the Chief Electoral Officer said.

He said the initiative must come from the media so that the "menace can be effectively" dealt with.

"The effort must come from within the media as it is difficult to identify cases of paid news. There must be a self imposed discipline by the media to combat the paid news," he said.

A total of 54 cases of paid news were detected by the Election Commission during the Assembly polls in Delhi in December last year.

Elaborating on the guidelines, he said using any political advertisement without prior certification by Media Certification and Monitoring Committees at district and state levels would be an offence.

He said any news channel, if uses video feed from political parties, should disclose the source of the footage.

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