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Steamy pictures on condom packs not to be censored, Centre to SC

  • The steamy pictures on various condom packets produced and manufactured by private manufacturers will not be regulated, censored or altered by any agency, government or censor board, the Centre will be informing the Supreme Court of India through an affidavit.

    "Existing provisions in the Cinematograph Act, the Cable TV Act and rules, as well as Press Council of India guidelines, stipulate a combination of self-regulation and prior certification with respect to certain products associated with alcohol and tobacco. These are considered sufficient and the government does not have any plan to further regulate advertisements on contraceptives or condoms," the health ministry will tell the SC.

    "The government does not plan to provide any advance certification or pre-censorship for any produce in addition to those already covered under the existing regulations," it will say. This response comes a month after an SC bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur asked additional solicitor general Maninder Singh to examine condom packets and inform the court whether it was desirable to regulate racy pictures on such packs.
     
    The bench had said on April 26, "Do you (government) have any plan to regulate such advertisements? You also tell us whether such advertisements constitute a penal offence."
     
    The health ministry and the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) will file a joint affidavit informing the SC that the government regulated pictures on packets of Nirodh and Deluxe Nirodh condoms -supplied at subsidised rates in the open market.
     
    It was only weeks earlier that the SC had asked senior government lawyer Maninder Singh to study condom and other contraceptive packets to determine if their pictures are too racy and should be banned.
     
    Conservatives in deeply religious parts of the country often register complaints with police under the obscenity law, which carries a maximum punishment of two years in jail and five years for repeat offenders.
     

    OUR TAKE

    The issue of condoms and the pictorial representations present on them is one of the cases that should not be on the top of the to-do list of the Supreme Court. Although accepted that it may hurt the feelings of some, there are thousands and thousands of other cases which should be prioritized above these topics. Many have blamed the Modi government for the bad state of judiciary present in the country right now. Instead of sending affidavits such as these, the government should be much more bothered about the shortage of judges in courts around the country.


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