Digital Media Rules Violate India’s Democracy & Constitution – By Prakhar Raghuvanshi
New rules to regulate digital media and online streaming platforms, made official by the Centre on 25 February 2021, are fraught with inconsistencies, ambiguities, go beyond the authority of the government to promulgate and appear to be against constitutional provisions.
The government does not have legislative backing to frame rules to govern OTTs and online publishers of news. Under the IT Act, the government can make rules only for intermediaries and the definition of intermediaries is not broad enough to cover OTTs and online media.
The rules violate rights guaranteed under Part III of the Constitution, and disproportionately impact the freedom of speech and expression, freedom of press, privacy and creative thinking. The apparent vagueness renders the rules unconstitutional and result in a concentration of power in the hands of the Executive by granting it adjudicatory powers….